iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus Evaluation: Sleeker, Higher, Extra Worth-Packed

September brings many welcome adjustments — crisp climate, a slowed-down tempo of life after the chaos of summer season, and, in fact, a slew of recent merchandise from Apple. Apple’s iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus ship new thrilling design, {hardware}, and efficiency breakthroughs over the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 that precede them. Dynamic Island-adorned screens, a high-resolution major digicam, and a again panel with a matte end are simply a number of the many new upgrades that make this newest iteration price splurging on, particularly given the truth that these premium options had been beforehand solely completely on the $1,000+ iPhone Professional fashions.

One other main iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus improve was over a decade within the making. After 11 years of rocking an Apple-exclusive Lightning port, the most recent iPhones shed it for a universally appropriate USB-C connector. The iPhone 15 and 15 Plus debuted alongside the all-new, titanium-clad iPhone 15 Professional and iPhone 15 Professional Max, Apple Watch Sequence 9 and Extremely 2, and refreshed AirPods Professional earphones with a USB-C storage case. Their pricing has remained unchanged — the iPhone 15 begins at $799 and the 15 Plus at $899.

New iPhone 15 & iPhone 15 Plus

New iPhone 15 & iPhone 15 Plus

Key Specs

iPhone 15 Show 6.1-inch Tremendous Retina XDR OLED show with 460 pixels per inch
iPhone 15 Plus Show 6.7-inch Tremendous Retina XDR OLED show with 460 pixels per inch
Chip A16 Bionic chip with 6-core CPU, 5-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine
Reminiscence As much as 512GB of storage
Digicam (rear) 48MP principal, 12MP ultra-wide, sensor-shift optical picture stabilization, Dolby Imaginative and prescient-enhanced 4K video recording
Digicam (entrance) 12MP with Face ID
Connectivity USB-C, 5G, Bluetooth 5.3, Wi-Fi 6, eSIM
Different IP68 waterproof, stereo audio system, MagSafe

After every week of placing the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus by their paces, I discovered the newcomers to be the very best telephones for the cash and nice buys for customers who wish to maintain their new telephone funds within the three-digit territory. The merchandise’ design and {hardware} adjustments make them stellar upgrades, second solely to the brand new Professional fashions within the iPhone vary. Right here’s all the things it’s worthwhile to find out about their design, on a regular basis efficiency, and distinctive options that set them aside from all equally priced opponents.


iPhone Professional Vibes All Round

the dynamic island of iphone 15 in action

Stefan Vazharov

The Dynamic Island is the largest design change the iPhone 15 brings over its predecessor. Along with making the gadget seem like its high-priced Professional family members, the brand new residence for the Face ID digicam brings a complete new world of interactions and comfort that older iPhones with a notch lacked.

From seamlessly controlling audio playback to retaining tabs on timers and Apple Maps route, all the best way to taking third-party apps to a complete new degree through Reside Actions, to call just some enhancements, the Dynamic Island will change how you utilize your new iPhone for the higher.

Despite the fact that it has the identical bodily measures and rear digicam format with diagonally positioned sensors because the iPhone 14, the iPhone 15 (and its Plus sibling) seems dramatically totally different, extra upmarket within the steel. Ditching the smudge-prone glass of the older non-Professional iPhones for one with a textured end makes fairly a distinction. The fabric swap helps black, blue, inexperienced, pink, and yellow colours accessible on the iPhone 13 or iPhone 14 look extra toned-down and complicated on the most recent launch.

iphone 14 and 15

iPhone 14 backside, iPhone 15 high.

Stefan Vazharov
iphone 14 and 15

iPhone 14 high, iPhone 15 backside.

Stefan Vazharov

Because of the matte glass of their again panels, I discovered the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus simpler to deal with and not using a case than older variations. Their barely contoured recycled aluminum edges made dealing with the brand new telephones really feel higher, too.

Uncompromisingly Sturdy, As Anticipated

color infused matte glass on the back of the iphone 15 and iphone 15 plus

iPhone 15 Plus and iPhone 15 Aspect by Aspect

Stefan Vazharov

The aluminum body and Ceramic Defend that covers the display of the iPhone 15 make it one probably the most sturdy telephones cash should purchase. The colour-infused glass on the system’s again panel is simply as reliable, although I nonetheless advocate placing a case on it to keep away from pesky scratches and dings that unintentional drops can carry (regardless of your finest efforts to forestall them). An official ranking ensures the telephone can deal with publicity to water and mud like lots of its predecessors going again to 2016.


iPhone Professional-Ranges of Brightness

iphone 15 and iphone 15 plus lock screens

Stefan Vazharov

The HDR-compatible 6.1- and 6.7-inch Tremendous Retina XDR OLED panels of the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus have the identical pixel density because the display of their iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 counterparts — however the important {hardware} elements on the brand new iteration can produce a better most brightness.

I used to be significantly impressed by the shows’ 2,000-nit peak brightness as a result of it made them completely legible even below direct daylight. Throughout noon walks in Central Park, I had no hassle studying and responding to emails on the iPhone 15 with out even needing to take away my sun shades. Beforehand, I may solely get pleasure from this luxurious on iPhone 14 Professional, so it’s nice to see it accessible in a lower cost tier.

You Get Standby Mode however no All the time-On Show

The above characteristic that made the iPhone 14 Professional a favourite of mine over the previous yr is sadly not accessible on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus. Having no always-on show impacts StandBy Mode — a cool iOS 17 characteristic that transforms the iPhone right into a helpful info middle or photograph body whereas charging in panorama place. You possibly can faucet on the display to view time, climate data, and incoming notifications, however it should periodically go fully darkish.

ProMotion tech with a excessive most refresh charge is unavailable on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus. As its title suggests, the characteristic is reserved for iPhone, iPad, and MacBook variations with a Professional moniker.


Convey On the Megapixels

iphone 15 camera test

Stefan Vazharov

Merely put, the pictures you possibly can take utilizing the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus will blow you away. After the iPhone 14 Professional and iPhone 14 Professional Max received a major bump in picture decision final yr, Apple adopted go well with by packing the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus with major picture sensors of the identical decision, making the smartphones extra able to cell pictures platforms than any earlier non-Professional iteration.

Remarkably, the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus vast digicam snaps 24-megapixel nonetheless pictures out of the field — that means that its picture decision is greater than the default picture decision of any earlier iPhone and big-name Androids just like the Google Pixel 7 and Samsung Galaxy S23. You possibly can seize full-resolution pictures at will by enabling the performance within the digicam settings.

iphone 15 camera test flowers

Stefan Vazharov

Identical to on the iPhone 14 Professional, the high-resolution digicam of the iPhone 15 can take high-quality 12-megapixel pictures with 2X magnification. By cropping into the sensor’s tens of tens of millions of pixels, the nifty bit brings legit optical zoom to a dual-camera iPhone for the primary time because the iPhone XS and XS Max from half a decade in the past.

The image high quality of the iPhone 15 and 15 Max is phenomenal throughout the board. The telephones captured detail-rich nonetheless pictures and 4K video with lifelike colours and spot-on dynamic vary, courtesy of the top-shelf {hardware} and the immense picture processing capabilities of the Neural Engine.

Subsequent-Degree Portraits

Portrait pictures has been an iPhone calling card since arriving on the iPhone 7 Plus through an iOS replace again within the day. Along with necessary picture high quality enhancements, the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus can rework commonplace pictures into dramatic portraits post-capture. Upon detecting an individual or a pet, the telephones will seize extra information and can help you edit them later.


A16 Bionic Chip

Apple geared up the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus with the A16 Bionic chip — a 4-nanometer element with a confirmed energy and vitality effectivity observe report within the iPhone 14 Professional duo. Despite the fact that it’s a yr outdated, the A16 Bionic chip continues to be forward of the silicon that powers the most recent Androids when it comes to sheer processing energy. The groundbreaking chip makes the iPhone 15 probably the most highly effective telephone below $1,000 and second solely to the iPhone 15 Professional in {hardware} oomph.

Throughout every week below fixed scrutiny, the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus excelled at each job I threw at them. Beginning up and switching between a number of apps was instantaneous, enhancing high-resolution pictures and movies simple, and powering by graphic-intensive Apple Arcade titles easy.

Reliable Battery Life

Generally, higher options lead to weaker battery life, however I had no hassle getting a full day of use from the iPhone 15 all through my testing. The Plus mannequin additionally had loads of battery left after days of numerous screen-on time. Relying in your life-style and habits, you possibly can impressively get a few days’ price of use between power-ups.



the usb c port of the iphone 15 and iphone 15 plus

Stefan Vazharov

Apple disposing of its traditional Lightning connector for a USB-C is an enormous deal. The drastic transfer ensures that you just solely have to search for one sort of connector to cost your iPhone, iPad, MacBook, Apple TV 4K distant, and numerous different devices, together with wi-fi headphones and earbuds. Switching to a USB-C iPhone helped me declutter my tech pouch by having to pack one cable lower than earlier than — and it is assured to make your life simpler on the go, too.

Reverse charging is one other extremely handy characteristic delivered to the most recent iPhones through USB-C. It makes charging your Apple Watch, the most recent AirPods Professional, and different appropriate wi-fi earbuds by plugging them into the iPhone’s USB-C. The {hardware} hyperlink is infinitely extra dependable than the reverse wi-fi charging choice supplied by some high-end Android telephones.

Unsurprisingly, the brand new connector additionally makes connecting the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus to a appropriate exterior monitor to stream content material or share movies you captured along with your new gadget simpler.

After all, MagSafe can also be on board the most recent iPhones, so you possibly can skip cable charging in case you desire. There are many wonderful charging docks and battery packs to select from.

Extra Lifesaving Tech

Final yr, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Professional modified the sport by bringing cutting-edge security tech, headlined by Crash Detection. Shortly after, an iOS replace enabled Emergency SOS satellite tv for pc service, taking the merchandise’ lifesaving powers up a notch by permitting them to assist customers get assist in distant areas with no mobile protection. The newest improve to the distinctive iPhone characteristic provides the choice to contact roadside help through satellite tv for pc.

I’ve by no means skilled Crash Detection or Emergency SOS on the iPhone 15, and I hope I by no means will. Nonetheless, figuring out this performance exists is among the many causes I’d advocate the product in a heartbeat.


In contrast to the fully invisible refreshes the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus delivered to the iPhone 13 and 13 Plus they changed, the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus look, really feel, and carry out on a better degree. The design, digicam, and efficiency enhancements, just like the addition of Dynamic Island, high-resolution picture sensor, and USB-C connector, make the most recent iPhone simple to advocate even to house owners of the earlier technology. That stated, in case you are an iPhone 14 or 14 Plus consumer who not too long ago upgraded, you possibly can skip this technology until digicam efficiency and film high quality are vital to you.

Alternatively, in case you are a seasoned Apple fanatic who can spend extra on the iPhone 15 and 15 Professional — the very best Apple smartphones thus far — and the distinctive design and {hardware} options they convey, go for it. The pricier Professional fashions are convincingly higher by and thru.

a closeup of the iphone 15 rear camera

Stefan Vazharov

Who Ought to Get the iPhone 15?

The iPhone 15 is extra pocket- and purse-friendly and simpler to make use of with one hand on the go than the Plus mannequin. It’s the best choice for upgraders switching from a 6.1-inch iPhone courting all of the again to the iPhone 11 or older releases with smaller screens. First-time iPhone customers (e.g., college students, older techies, Android converts, and so on.) who will not be into tablet-replacing huge screens will get pleasure from all the things the iPhone 15 provides.

Who Ought to Get the iPhone 15 Plus?

The large-screen iPhone 15 Plus is nice for many who regularly use their telephone for work, streaming video, scrolling by social media feeds, studying, and gaming, amongst different utilization situations. The system’s superior battery life additionally makes it higher for on-the-go multitaskers.

Spending $799 or $899 on an entry-level iPhone 15 or iPhone 15 Plus will get you a tool with 128 GB of storage — sufficient for a lot of customers. Doubling the reminiscence prices one other $100, whereas maxing it out to 512 GB will add $200 to the ultimate invoice.

Talking of prices, remember the fact that there’s no want to instantly pay full worth plus relevant gross sales taxes to get your palms on a brand new iPhone. You possibly can snag the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus by paying simply palatable month-to-month installments or, higher but, absolutely cowl the improve price by buying and selling in your eligible outdated iPhone.

Store iPhone 15 and 15 Max


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Senior Know-how Editor, Critiques

Stefan is the senior expertise editor for Finest Merchandise, the place he’s been overlaying the tech trade and testing the most recent devices since 2015. He’s an award-winning editor with greater than a decade of expertise reporting on and reviewing shopper tech merchandise, particularly smartphones, tablets, laptops, and audio gear like headphones, earbuds, audio system, and soundbars. Stefan was beforehand the U.S. editor for GSMArena.com. His work will also be discovered on Common Mechanics and different Hearst publications.