An Apple supplier appears to have confirmed that Apple’s upcoming iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models will not be equipped with solid-state buttons. The revelation came on Thursday in Apple supplier Cirrus Logic’s shareholder letter:
Among the HPMS opportunities we have discussed, a new product that we mentioned in previous shareholder letters as being scheduled for introduction this fall is no longer expected to come to market as planned. As we have limited visibility into our customer’s future plans for this product at this time, we are removing the revenue associated with this component from our internal model.
HPMS refers to Cirrus Logic’s high-performance mixed-signal chips, which include the haptic drivers used for the iPhone’s Taptic Engine. It had been expected that Apple would replace the volume buttons on the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max with solid-state buttons that would mimic the physical feeling of buttons being pressed by using small vibrations, similar to the method used in Apple’s Mac trackpads.
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In a shareholder letter sent out last November, Cirrus Logic said it continues to “engage with a strategic customer” and that it expected to “bring a new HPMS component to market in smartphones next year.” Apple is the Texas-based semiconductor company’s largest customer, accounting for 79% of the firm’s revenue during the 2022 fiscal year.
In January, Apple industry analyst Ming-Chi Kuo repeated an earlier claim that iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models would boast solid-state volume and power buttons. He also said that Apple’s other high-end devices could follow suit in the future if the change to solid-state buttons was well-received. Cirrus Logic would likely have been the provider for related components.
However, in April. Kuo reversed course, saying the new iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models will stick with the traditional buttons that move when pressed due to “unresolved technical issues before mass production.”
Multiple rumors have indicated that the Ring/Silent switch on the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max lineup will be replaced with a button, which could possibly be customizable, similar to the Apple Watch Ultra Action button.
Tech analyst Jeff Pu also weighed in with his expectations for Apple’s upcoming iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max handsets back in January, confirming expectations that the iPhone 15 lineup will likely include four models, the 6.1-inch iPhone 15, the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Plus, the 6.1-inch iPhone 15 Pro, and the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Pro Max.
Pu expects the iPhone 15 Pro models to sport a titanium frame, with a USB-C port replacing the iPhone 14’s Lightning port. He also expects the new Pro models to boast 8GB of RAM, up from 6GB in the iPhone 14 Pro models.
Pu also says the “Pro” models will likely be powered by an A17 Bionic chip, fabricated using TSMC’s 3nm process, while the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will likely be powered with the A16 Bionic chip and 6GB of RAM. He says all four models will use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X70 modem, capable of 5G and LTE.
Pu also expects the iPhone 15 Pro Max camera’s telephoto lens to feature periscope technology for improved optical zoom. He expects the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus to boast a 48-megapixel rear camera sensor similar to what’s used on current iPhone 14 Pro models.