Bigger and brighter: iPhone 16 & iPhone 16 Pro rumored screen changes

Posted:
in iPhone edited May 29

The iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro are expected to get some display changes. Here's what's believed to be on the way, thanks to the ever-grinding rumor mill.

Smartphone with colorful wavy wallpaper on the screen, floating against a geometric purple and pink background.
The iPhone 16 Pro's screen may get bigger.



Since the display is the most important part of a smartphone, rumors tend to pile in about every minute change coming. Despite Apple's generally slow year-over-year pacing for upgrades, a lot of tiny adjustments have been rumored so far.

The displays were relatively untouched for the iPhone 15 lineup. That means the iPhone 16 lineup could see significant display upgrades, especially with the 13-inch iPad Pro flexing with a tandem OLED display.

Considering the overall volume of rumors, many have focused on the display. That could be a result of the importance of the component, ease of leaking information from that sector, or a combination of both.

Here's a roundup of what leakers and analysts believe will arrive with the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro.

iPhone 16 Pro screen size rumors



Size is a big factor of displays on a mobile device, and it's the same for the iPhone 16. This time, they're set to be bigger and better.

Rumors started off in May 2023, before the iPhone 15's release, indicating that a size increase was inbound. Analyst Ross Young said that the iPhone 16 Pro and Pro Max would have screens measuring 6.2 inches and 6.8 inches respectively, with those figures rounded down.

This would in theory be a small increase for the models, from the existing 6.1-inch iPhone 15 Pro and the 6.7-inch iPhone 15 Pro Max.

Two renders of an iPhone 16 Pro on a red surface, one showing the back with triple cameras, the other displaying a colorful lock screen with the time and date.
Renders of what could be the iPhone 16 Pro



One of the claims for the screen size change is apparently to help the Pro and Pro Max variants to fit in a periscope lens. Adding a large sideways lens assembly would necessitate some design changes internally, especially for space.

Another report from later the same month claimed that the Pro models would gain in size by "a couple tens of an inch diagonally." Other leakers the same month offered sizes up to 6.3 inches and 6.9 inches.

At the end of September, after the iPhone 15 launch, rumors reappeared, claiming a 6.27-inch screen for the iPhone 16 Pro and a 6.85-inch version for the Pro Max.

iPhone 16 & iPhone 16 Pro bezel rumors



To go with the bigger screens, Apple could thin the bezels a bit to keep the overall iPhone size from scaling up too much. But that can cause some production issues.

In April, The Elec reported that supply chain members were having a problem shrinking the bezels more, causing yield issues.

Two smartphones side by side, one showing the back with three cameras, and the other showing the front screen with red and yellow wallpaper.
A reduced bezel could allow the iPhone 16 Pro screen to be bigger without growing the device's overall size.
One month prior

, there were claims that the ultra-thin bezels would use Border Reduction Structure (BRS) technology. However, there was a problem applying it to the bottom edge.

Issues in heat dissipation were supposedly improving, but it was still a challenge for suppliers to actually get right.

iPhone 16 Pro brightness changes



A few leaks surfaced over the year, proposing that the displays in the iPhone 16 could be much brighter than previous versions.

The September 2023 leak insisted Apple was looking into a Micro Lens Array (MLA) technology. It had previously researched it, but hadn't used it a display.

The concept can increase the display brightness of an OLED screen by microlenses being hit by light that ends up heading towards the back panel, reflecting it forward instead.

A render of two layers of OLED pixels being stacked
Tandem OLED is already used by the 2024 iPad Pro models



One of the issues with the tech is that it does reduce the viewing angle of the screen, which Apple had trouble accepting.

By May, another leak from Setsuna Digital on Weibo insisted that the Pro models would get a boost. The iPhone 16 Pro would have a typical maximum brightness of 1,200 nits, and a peak HDR brightness of 1,600 nits.

Compared to the iPhone 14 Pro, this represents a 200-nit increase in typical max brightness and a continuation of the HDR brightness level.

At the same time, the leaker claimed that Apple wouldn't use the Tandem OLED structure introduced with the 2024 iPad Pro. That system uses two OLED layers instead of one, increasing overall brightness.

Under-screen Face ID rumors, again



A thorn in the side of iPhone users over the years has been Apple's display compromises to fit in the TrueDepth camera array, enabling Face ID to work. Apple has shifted from the dreaded notch to the more loved Dynamic Island, but it may remove it entirely in the future.

Back in February 2023, The Elec said that an under-display Face ID implementation could happen on the iPhone 16 Pro, enabling an all-screen display. There was difficulty in getting an under-panel camera working through the display specifically for Face ID.

Two renders of an iPhone 16 Pro on a dark surface, one showing the back with three cameras, the other displaying a patterned screen.
The front and back of what could be the iPhone 16 Pro.



The biggest problem is that it works, but for camera modules with 4 million pixels, a far cry from what Apple needed to maintain its 12MP sensor.

The prediction of an under-display Face ID camera is a lot older than that. In April 2022, Ming-Chi Kuo responded to a tweet from Ross Young in predicting it would arrive by 2024, for the iPhone 16.

iPhone 16 & iPhone 16 Pro parts are in production



With only a few months away from release, the manufacturers of Apple's displays were reportedly getting very close to starting mass production. The Elec reported in May that Apple was preparing to approve its suppliers to start making screens.

Samsung Display was expected to receive approval by the end of May, with LG Display by the middle of June, and BOE to follow.

LG and Samsung were expected to make displays across multiple models. The report added that BOE was making non-iPhone displays.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    charlesncharlesn Posts: 906member
    "Apple has shifted from the dreaded notch to the more loved Dynamic Island..."

    More loved? Ummm, that would be a NO for me. At least the notch was integrated into the overall bezel design. Does Nothing Island just sits there like a pill-shaped black hole sucking out all the light and usefulness from the upper middle of your screen. It's clearly destined for the trash heap next to Touch Bar, 3D Press and other rejected Apple interfaces and that can't happen soon enough for me. I honestly don't mind that Apple tries new things out, but I wish they'd ditch the failures like Does Nothing Island more quickly. 
    jeffharriswilliamlondongrandact73dewme
  • Reply 2 of 10
    Wesley HilliardWesley Hilliard Posts: 213member, administrator, moderator, editor
    charlesn said:
    "Apple has shifted from the dreaded notch to the more loved Dynamic Island..."

    More loved? Ummm, that would be a NO for me. At least the notch was integrated into the overall bezel design. Does Nothing Island just sits there like a pill-shaped black hole sucking out all the light and usefulness from the upper middle of your screen. It's clearly destined for the trash heap next to Touch Bar, 3D Press and other rejected Apple interfaces and that can't happen soon enough for me. I honestly don't mind that Apple tries new things out, but I wish they'd ditch the failures like Does Nothing Island more quickly. 
    So you'd prefer a solid block of inert glass that literally couldn't do anything except be useless space?
    Alex1Nwilliamlondon
  • Reply 3 of 10
    For me the bezels are way more important them the under screen Face ID.

    I don't mind the dynamic island at all, it. has some neat animations. That's all.

    Too much fuss about the notch for too long.

    For me the iPhone is perfect as it is. Just the zoom that sucks a bit, the rest is perfect.

    The future is vision pro now.
    edited May 29 iOS_Guy80
  • Reply 4 of 10
    charlesn said:
    "Apple has shifted from the dreaded notch to the more loved Dynamic Island..."

    More loved? Ummm, that would be a NO for me. At least the notch was integrated into the overall bezel design. Does Nothing Island just sits there like a pill-shaped black hole sucking out all the light and usefulness from the upper middle of your screen. It's clearly destined for the trash heap next to Touch Bar, 3D Press and other rejected Apple interfaces and that can't happen soon enough for me. I honestly don't mind that Apple tries new things out, but I wish they'd ditch the failures like Does Nothing Island more quickly. 
    The notch is ugly, it always has been - it is the main reason I have steadfastly stuck with the notchless iPhone SE. The dynamic island does many things because it is enhanced by software in iOS. When the dynamic island is not doing any of the extra things, re notifications and providing quick access to app controls like music, etc, it does exactly the same thing the ugly notch did (house the face ID camera and sensors).

    The notch is even more useless on MacBooks, which do not even have face ID, it just takes up menu bar space for no good reason - again, the ugly notch on MacBooks is the main reason I have steadfastly stuck with my 12yo MacBook Pro w/retina display (which also still has plenty of storage and runs well even after 12 years on the track with me).
    edited May 29 williamlondondewme
  • Reply 5 of 10
    RockadayRockaday Posts: 1member
    Forget about the notch, screen size and brightness.  Apple needs to fix the biggest ergonomic blunder since the hickey puck mouse.  Move the wake sleep button from the side back to the top as God and Steve Jobs intended!  

    Before the 6, you could use the volume buttons as a shutter release, intuitively without thinking.  Now if I'm not careful i get a screen shot or turn the phone off.  Sometimes just picking up the phone, I take a screen shot.  Everyone I know with an iPhone has the same issue, even Apple's employees at the store.

    Now we have the 'action' button, so picking up the phone wrong put me in silent mode.  Should be the 'accident' button.  Sheesh.  Did Apple hire some engineers from Samsung or Microsoft or what.

    Thanks,  I'll take my meds now.
    williamlondonrundhvid
  • Reply 6 of 10
    I would bet on tandem OLED for the flagship iPhones since Apple has proven the tech for the iPad Pro and it would put the Pro line in sync with premium visuals.

    I highly doubt they will go for under screen anything as what is the pull factor? Yes TouchID is useful but likely they need all the space they can get to bring enhanced camera optics and telescope lens and potentially the double OLED display in addition to AI enhanced SoC.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 7 of 10
    The Dynamic Island is nothing but cope for Apple, pawning it off as some sort of innovation because they are unable to get rid of the notch like the Samsung Galaxy.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    arirandoarirando Posts: 5member
    I know this may be controversial but why not take Samsung panels and make it look just like theirs on the Galaxy devices? That screen is simply pure gold: vibrant, beautiful and screams at you!
    Sometimes I imagine how gorgeous iOS would look in one of those. I think Apple's 'tone down' idea on Samsung's screens is a bad decision where Samsung has already done their job there.
    Or is there something I'm missing here?
  • Reply 9 of 10
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,476member
    The bezel wars are over. The thickest bezel on any current iPhone is so small that you’ll only get a handful of extra pixels by thinning it down even more. I have never looked at my iPhone 14 Pro Max and thought, “dammit, those bezels are killing me.” In my opinion trying to thin the bezels down even more is not something I care about at all. Of course your opinion may be different. 

    I’d prefer that any time, money, effort, or resources dedicated to thinning the bezels be redirected to coming up with a way to eliminate the notch/dynamic island. Again, your opinion may be different than mine but I’ve never seen the Dynamic Island as being anything other than a burlesque fan dance attempt to hide the notch. But at the end of the day the notch is still there as it’s always been since the iPhone 10. 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 10 of 10
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,919member
    charlesn said:
    "Apple has shifted from the dreaded notch to the more loved Dynamic Island..."

    More loved? Ummm, that would be a NO for me. At least the notch was integrated into the overall bezel design. Does Nothing Island just sits there like a pill-shaped black hole sucking out all the light and usefulness from the upper middle of your screen. It's clearly destined for the trash heap next to Touch Bar, 3D Press and other rejected Apple interfaces and that can't happen soon enough for me. I honestly don't mind that Apple tries new things out, but I wish they'd ditch the failures like Does Nothing Island more quickly. 

    I have iPhone 14 with old notch but I can't wait to upgrade to iPhone16 with dynamic island. No doubt, between two, I like/love Dynamic Island over old notch.
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