iPhone 16 prototypes

(Image credit: MacRumors)

Apple’s not one for deviating from its schedule, so you can expect to see the iPhone 16 lineup announced and released in September 2024. But how much will the iPhone 16 cost? 

The Cupertino crew is expected to make a number of upgrades to the iPhone 16 lineup, from potentially introducing an iPhone 16 Ultra to making the largest versions of the Pro and Pro Max yet

On top of this, these will also natively run Apple Intelligence out of the box since Apple is restricting AI to devices that have A17 chips or later. Plus, rumors are pointing to an update to, Wi-Fi 7, which promises speeds up to 30 gigabits per second. 

While all of this is exciting on paper, the speculation is starting to build around whether we’ll see a price increase. With rising component costs and new AI-driven features, it’s not unreasonable to expect Apple to raise prices. But we could also see prices kept the same, as they have done for the past few generations. Let’s get into it.

iPhone 15 lineup prices

iPhone 15 Pro Max in hand

(Image credit: Future)

The last few iPhone lineups have not seen price increases. The entry-level models for the iPhone 14 and the iPhone 15 started at $800 with the Plus versions bumping up slightly to $900.

The Pro models stayed the same price at $1,000 but last year’s iPhone 15 Pro Max saw a new price of $1,199, a $100 bump over the iPhone 14 Pro Max. At the same time, Apple also ditched the 128GB storage option and the new (more expensive) baseline became 256GB. 

If Apple changes nothing, expect the same prices for the iPhone 16 lineup. Excluding the rumored iPhone 16 Ultra, which might see a $1,200 or higher price point. With backend code revealing five upcoming iPhone 16 devices, we could see the Ultra or a down-the-line iPhone SE 4, which would be significantly cheaper at around $499.

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New features

Gif animation of new Siri with Apple Intelligence animation.

(Image credit: Apple)

Beyond Apple Intelligence, the iPhone 16 will see a number of new features. Starting with the Pro hand-me-down, every 16th gen iPhone looks set to get the Action butoon, which was limited to the 15 Pro last year.

We’ve also seen prototypes of the iPhone 16 and Plus with a different camera layout. Pro models may see an improved 48MP ultra wide lens.  The camera rumors have been all over the map for the iPhone 16 but those are just a couple of changes that the devices might see.

There’s also the the rumor that the iPhone 16 Pro and Pro Max will get larger displays — making them some of the largest iPhones ever. The iPhone 16 Pro apparently measures 6.3-inches while the Pro Max will come in at 6.9-inches.

The entire lineup is expected to receive the A18 chip, with the Pro models likely receiving an “A18 Pro” variant. 

Rising component costs

You may have seen it in pricing this year, but 2024 has been the year of price hikes for most companies. Samsung boosted the price of their high-end phone the Galaxy S24 Ultra to $1,299, for example

With rising phone component costs, it would not surprise us if the iPhone 16 saw a similar jump across the board. Purportedly, the supersize Pro Max costs Apple $558 to make, with the iPhone 15 also seeing a cost bump up to $423 — 16% compared to the iPhone 14. Last year, Apple absorbed the costs. Will they do so again?

According to MacRumors, in China, Apple resellers are resorting to promotions to move iPhone 15 stock. At the same time, Chinese manufacturers like OnePlus and Huawei have only gotten more popular in China, with a strong interest in AI being one of the causes. 

Apple raising prices is not a new rumor either. Ahead of the launch of the iPhone 15 models, a number of rumors popped up claiming that both Pro and Pro Max models would see hikes. The Pro Max did see a rise, but again, that could be attributed to Apple ditching the 128GB storage capacity variant. The other sizes stayed the same price as previous iterations.

We’ll know more when Apple holds its September 2024 event. Until then, keep checking in with us for more information about the future of the iPhone.

More from Tom’s Guide

Scott Younker is the West Coast Reporter at Tom’s Guide. He covers all the lastest tech news. He’s been involved in tech since 2011 at various outlets and is on an ongoing hunt to build the easiest to use home media system. When not writing about the latest devices, you are more than welcome to discuss board games or disc golf with him. 

[ For more curated Apple news, check out the main news page here]

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