Monday, December 4, 2023


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Review of the iPhone 15 Pro: Should you purchase Apple’s top-of-the-line alternative to Android?

Is purchasing the Apple iPhone 15 Pro a wise decision?

Apple iPhone 15 Pro App Drawer


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Let’s dive into the two major revisions to the well-known iPhone design. The first change is the replacement of the Lightning port with a USB-C port. This means that the iPhone 15 series can now be charged using the same plugs and cables as other modern devices. The Pro model also offers faster 10Gbps data speeds through the USB-C port, allowing for quicker data transfer compared to Lightning. It also has DisplayPort capability for external display mirroring. These features may be familiar to Android users, but they bring Apple’s formula into the current era. However, in order to take full advantage of these benefits, users will need to purchase a higher quality USB-C cable, as the one provided by Apple may not suffice. This may seem like a small decision for a $1,000 purchase.

The Action Button is a noteworthy new feature, and it’s quite impressive. I have always appreciated having customizable buttons and gestures on some Android devices, and as expected from Apple, the iPhone 15 Pro enhances this feature with added refinement. However, in order to fully utilize it, one must be proficient in Shortcuts. This allows for a menu of extended options to be presented, expanding the button’s initial limited capabilities. While the default quick access options of Silent, Focus, Camera, Magnifier, Torch, and Accessibility are satisfactory, why settle for just one when you can have multiple?

Can the iPhone 15 Pro withstand water?

The iPhone 15 Pro has a dust and water resistance rating of IP68.

This year, Apple has replaced the chassis of the iPhone with Titanium, resulting in a weight reduction of 19 grams compared to the previous model. While I appreciate this change, I still find the iPhone 15 Pro to be too heavy when holding it. The design of the phone, including the display and camera placement, is identical to its predecessors, and the updated color options do not bring any new excitement. While the hardware changes are well-executed, the iPhone remains fundamentally unchanged from previous models. To add some personality, a colorful case will be necessary.

Can the iPhone 14 Pro case be used for the 15 Pro?

It is unlikely, but it may vary depending on the situation. Although the two phones have comparable sizes, the iPhone 15 Pro is slightly thinner by a few millimeters, so it is uncertain if previous cases will fit properly.

iOS 17 includes various updates, however, the fundamental iPhone experience stays true to the successful formula, and these fresh additions are not limited to the iPhone 15 series. A few of the most notable new features are FaceTime video messages and reactions, improved autocorrect through a new machine learning model, interactive widgets on the home screen, a new StandBy lock screen, live transcriptions for voicemail, and contact posters – all valuable enhancements.

The addition of an Action Button and USB-C brings a fresh perspective to the otherwise well-known iPhone.

If you’re considering the iPhone 15 Pro for its high performance, you will not be let down. The new A17 Pro chip from Apple surpasses all other benchmarks by a significant amount, making this phone more than capable for just messaging and web browsing. However, the main reason to purchase a Pro model is to utilize the extra power for multitasking, gaming, and multimedia editing, in which this phone excels.

However, this level of performance comes at a cost – elevated temperatures. Our stress test findings are unsatisfactory for avid gamers. The iPhone 15 Pro loses its maximum performance after completing only one round of 3DMark’s stress tests. While these tests are more demanding than most high-end games, it suggests that the device may experience overheating and reduced performance during extended gaming sessions and when playing games that utilize ray tracing. This raises doubts about Apple’s assertion of offering console-quality gaming without extra cooling measures.

At first, the iPhone 15 Pro was not just better in gaming compared to other phones, but after further testing with the latest iOS 17.0.3, this issue has been resolved. The temperatures are now similar to other phones, but recording a 10-minute video can still cause a spike in temperature, especially at higher resolutions. Additionally, using the phone while it is charging can cause the external case temperature to go above 40°C, making it uncomfortable to hold. Unfortunately, a software update cannot fix this issue.

Regarding charging, switching from Lightning to USB-C has not improved the situation at all. Apple still limits the iPhone 15 Pro to 20W of power when using USB Power Delivery chargers, although there have been occasional spikes up to 25W which do not help with keeping temperatures down. It takes 90 minutes to fully charge the phone, which is quite slow compared to modern fast charging. While reaching earlier percentages is not as sluggish, it is still far from being fast. It takes 12 minutes to reach 25% charge, 24 minutes for 50%, and 42 minutes for 75% when starting from empty. However, none of these charging times will be sufficient for demanding users to last through an entire day.

Aside from charging capabilities, the iPhone 15 Pro is designed for long-term use, and this is reinforced by Apple’s consistently strong software support. However, it is no longer accurate to say that Apple is the leader in this aspect. Google’s Pixel 8 series has proven that iOS’s superior support is not a deciding factor when choosing between it and Android. The eighth generation of Pixels will receive both OS and security updates for a guaranteed seven years. While we have seen iPhones also receive updates for this long, Apple does not officially offer a guarantee. Nonetheless, you can still feel confident that your $999 investment will not be abandoned.

The introduction of software updates has helped resolve major initial problems with overheating, but the slow charging issue remains unresolved.

This review of the iPhone 15 Pro would not be complete without examining its photography features to determine if it surpasses the leading Android camera phones. Although the camera sensors remain unchanged, there are some noteworthy additions to mention.

The main camera now features a new sensor-shift OIS system that provides better stabilization. This is particularly useful for taking low light shots with long exposures, but it truly shines when recording videos. Apple’s setup remains a standout in terms of video capabilities, as it offers ProRes video and LOG encoding that are highly sought after by professional videographers. However, it’s worth noting that the phone may become overheated during use.

The primary sensor now has a default resolution of 24MP and combines data from both the 48MP raw resolution and 12MP pixel-binned images. While there is a slight increase in detail compared to last year’s models, this is only noticeable in optimal lighting conditions and not a true 48MP clarity. The iPhone 15 series also has the ability to capture 2x zoom shots from the 48MP sensor, but the quality greatly depends on having enough light to properly illuminate the smaller pixels. At times, the 2x zoom appears very sharp, but other times it looks blurry, and most of the time it is indistinguishable from the previous 2x zoom method.

I have no issues with these added features, however, I do struggle with the incorrect labeling of the 24, 28, and 35mm modes when using the 1x button. These modes simply correspond to 1x, 1.2x, and 1.5x crops, without any actual changes to the focal length or depth of field. Apple implies the presence of features that do not actually exist.

To achieve the most visually appealing zoom, the 3x optical zoom lens offers greater detail. However, it is not suitable for long-distance shots. The Pro Max model is the only one equipped with Apple’s premium 5x zoom lens. Additionally, the digital upscaling on Apple’s iPhone 15 Pro is quite impressive, allowing for photos up to 6x zoom. However, this may result in slightly reduced sharpness and dynamic range. The 77mm focal length, although on the longer side, provides an additional choice for portrait photography and natural background blur.

Apple states that the ultrawide lens now has the ability to capture more light. However, it is still considered the weakest aspect of the phone, especially in low light situations. When the lighting is dim, details in photos tend to blur. Other long-standing problems also persist, such as a yellowish tint in photos, underexposed images due to Apple’s HDR feature, and overly sharp selfies. Color saturation can also vary greatly. Overall, the camera package is versatile but still prone to errors and has not seen significant improvement from previous versions.


In general, the iPhone 15 Pro from Apple is a reliable phone that, despite its slow charging, does not have any significant mistakes and performs most tasks competently, though not exceptionally. However, starting at a price of $999 for only 128GB of storage (most likely, you will want the $1,099 model with 256GB at the minimum), the device does not offer enough unique features to justify an early upgrade, even if you currently have an older 12 Pro model.

What are some top choices for alternatives to the Apple iPhone 15 Pro?

Apple iPhone 15 Pro vs Google Pixel 7 Pro standing up

Credit: Robert Triggs / Android Authority

While Apple is moving forward with their latest smartphones, it does not mean that other competing options should be overlooked. There are several choices available for under $1,000 that provide great value for the price.

  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus (
    Apple’s main rival is unquestionably the Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus. This phone boasts superior base storage and battery life, as well as a strong triple camera system, wireless charging, IP68 rating, and impressive build quality. While the software differs between the two, Apple may have the advantage with its extensive ecosystem and videography capabilities. However, the Samsung Plus model also caters to professionals. Keep in mind, if you desire top-of-the-line specs, you’ll have to invest in the Galaxy S23 Ultra, which comes at a higher cost.
  • Google Pixel 8 Pro (

    If you’re searching for a top-performing camera on an Android device, the Pixel 8 Pro should definitely be considered, thanks to its impressive long-range zoom capabilities, advanced AI features, and promise of frequent software updates. Although it may not have the same level of gaming power as the A17 Pro, the Pixel 8 Pro is the closest option to a pure Android experience.

  • Sony Xperia 5 V (

    Although not currently available in the US, other parts of the world should take note of Sony’s newest device. Its small size, IP68 certification, ability to charge wirelessly, and multimedia features make it a strong competitor to the iPhone 15 Pro. Those who work with videos will appreciate Sony’s manual controls. However, Sony falls short in terms of its update frequency compared to Apple, and its dual cameras cannot match the zoom capabilities of the 15 Pro.

  • Apple iPhone 14 Pro (

    Last year’s iPhone 14 Pro may not be the most obvious option, but it is still a reliable choice for fans of iOS. If you don’t care about features like USB-C, a 24MP camera, and the new Action Button, the overall experience and features are very comparable to the 15 Pro. Plus, it could save you some money while supplies last.

  • Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max (
    The 15 Pro series’ older sibling is fairly similar, but it offers an upgraded zoom lens (with up to 5x optical) as well as a bigger battery and display.

Specifications for the Apple iPhone 15 Pro

iPhone 15 Pro iPhone 15 Pro Max
Display 6.1-inch OLED

The refresh rate of the 120Hz Pro Motion display
Dynamic Island
Always-on display (AOD)
HDR and HDR10
Dolby Vision

6.7-inch OLED

The display refresh rate is 120Hz with Pro Motion technology.
Dynamic Island
Always-on display (AOD)
HDR and HDR10
Dolby Vision

Processor A17 Pro A17 Pro

128, 256, or 512 gigabytes; or 1 terabyte

256 or 512GB; or 1TB
Power 20W wired charging

There is no charger included in the package.

MagSafe enables 15W wireless charging.

20W wired charging

The box does not include a charger.

Wireless charging of 15 watts using MagSafe technology.

Battery 3,274mAh 4,422mAh
Cameras REAR:

The primary wide lens has a resolution of 48MP and features a 24mm focal length, ƒ/1.78 aperture, and 2.44µm pixel size with OIS capabilities.
– 12MP ultrawide (13mm, ƒ/2.2, 1.4µm)

The camera has a 12-megapixel telephoto lens with a focal length of 77mm and an aperture of ƒ/2.8.
– LiDAR scanner


The wide camera has a 12 megapixel resolution and a 23mm focal length with an aperture of ƒ/1.9.


The main wide camera has a resolution of 48 megapixels and a focal length of 24mm, with an aperture of ƒ/1.78 and pixel size of 2.44µm, and also has optical image stabilization.
– 12MP ultrawide (13mm, ƒ/2.2, 1.4µm)
– 12MP tetraprism telephoto (120mm, ƒ/2.8, 1.12µm)
– LiDAR scanner

– 12 MP wide (23mm, ƒ/1.9)

Video 4K video (24, 25, 30, or 60fps)

Video in 1080p resolution at a frame rate of 25, 30, or 60 frames per second.

The maximum resolution for ProRes is 4K at 60 frames per second.

Slow motion at 1080p, capturing 120 or 240 frames per second.
Log video recording
ACES supported

4K video (24, 25, 30, or 60fps)

Video recorded at a resolution of 1080p and a frame rate of either 25, 30, or 60 frames per second.
ProRes up to 4K/60fps

Slow motion at 1080p resolution, either at 120 or 240 frames per second.
Log video recording
ACES supported


Two eSIMs (no physical SIM in the US)
Qualcomm X70 modem
Wi-Fi 6E

Fifth-generation (5G) wireless technology, including both Sub6 and mmWave frequencies in the United States.
Bluetooth 5.3

Two eSIMs (no physical SIM card in the US)
Qualcomm X70 modem
Wi-Fi 6E

The 5G network in the US includes both Sub6 and mmWave technology.
Bluetooth 5.3

Ports USB-C

There is no SIM card slot available in the United States and certain other countries.

There is no 3.5mm headphone jack.


There is no SIM card slot available in the US and certain other countries.

There is no 3.5mm port for headphones.

Security and durability Face ID
IP68 rating
Face ID
IP68 rating
Software iOS 17 iOS 17
Dimensions and weight 146.6 x 70.6 x 8.25mm
159.9 x 76.7 x 8.25mm
Colors Black Titanium, White Titanium, Blue Titanium, and Natural Titanium Black Titanium, White Titanium, Blue Titanium, and Natural Titanium
In-Box contents iPhone 15 Pro

A cable with USB-C connectors on both ends (USB 2.0).

iPhone 15 Pro Max

Cable with USB-C connectors on both ends (USB 2.0)

Frequently Asked Questions about the Apple iPhone 15 Pro: Review

Is the iPhone 15 Pro equipped with USB-C?

The entire iPhone 15 series is equipped with a USB-C port.

Which charger is compatible with the iPhone 15 Pro?

The iPhone 15 Pro can be charged using a USB-C cable and is compatible with any charger that can provide 20W of power and supports the USB Power Delivery protocol. Both Apple’s official plug and third-party chargers are capable of charging the device.

Is there a SIM card slot on the iPhone 15 Pro?

The US version of the iPhone 15 Pro does not have a slot for a physical SIM card, only an eSIM. However, in other countries, it still has a nano-SIM tray.