Going forward, Apple might make its latest and greatest A-series chips exclusive to high-end iPhone models, according to a reputable analyst.
Apple previously did not differentiate between Pro and “regular” iPhones when it came to processors. But that could change with this year’s iPhone 14 lineup.
Future iPhone Pro models could be faster than non-Pro models
In a note on Medium, TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says the iPhone 14 Pro models will exclusively use the upcoming A16 chip. This tactic will continue in the future, Kuo says, leading to an increase in the shipment of Pro models. In 2022, the analyst expects iPhone 14 Pro to account for 55% to 60% of the total lineup shipment — up from 40% to 50% in the past.
Last year’s A15 Bionic is expected to do duty inside the regular iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max models. It is not a slow processor by any means. However, the newer A16 chip reportedly will bring some major improvements, including a faster ISP and Neural Engine. This year’s A16 processor supposedly will use the same 5nm node as the existing A15, though.
The analyst’s claims corroborate previous rumors that iPhone 14 Pro models will exclusively use the A16 chip this year. Despite the price difference in the models, Apple previously always used its latest SoC on Pro and non-Pro iPhones. It uses the same A15 Bionic chip across the entire iPhone 13 lineup. The same processor also powers the third-generation iPhone SE, which starts from $429 in the United States.
Apple vendors will benefit from this strategy
Rising costs and supply-chain problems likely forced the company to change its approach. Apple could keep some features exclusive to the Pro models each year because of the different processors.
The move will benefit Apple vendors providing components for the Pro models, especially Sony, Largan and LG Innotek. They supply camera components for the high-end models and will see an uptick in their shipments.
It looks like if you want the fastest iPhone that’s available, you will have to spring for the Pro models going forward.