The iPhone 15 is getting ready for its global debut on September 12. And a big rumor floating around ahead of the event is that, Apple will still sell a $799 smartphone that has a 60Hz display, in 2023/2024. Or $899 if we’re talking about the iPhone 15 Plus.
So why is Apple going to do this? It’s simple. It’s because of what they market a 120Hz display as. And that’s ProMotion. Why would Apple put a feature that literally has “Pro” in its name, on a non-Pro device? It just doesn’t make sense. So let’s explore why it doesn’t make sense.
ProMotion is only on Pro iPads and Macbooks
This isn’t just an iPhone issue either. If you look across Apple’s other product lines, you’ll see that only the “Pro” models have a 120Hz display.
Let’s look at the iPad. There’s the iPad 9th Generation, iPad Air 5, iPad Mini 6, and the iPad Pro. Which one do you think has a ProMotion display, aka 120Hz? That’s going to be the iPad Pro in both the 11- and 12.9-inch models. Not the iPad Air, which has the same chipset as the Pro model, and definitely not the iPad Mini or the plain iPad. But do we hear people complaining about Apple selling an iPad Air 5 for $599 that’s only 60Hz? Nope. Though we do hear them complaining about a starting storage of 64GB instead of 128GB.
Now let’s move onto the Macs. And it’s really only the MacBooks that this applies to. Apple has the MacBook Air in 13- and 15-inch models. And then the MacBook Pro in 14- and 16-inch models (we’re going to forget that the 13-inch exists, because it shouldn’t). Which one do you think has a 120Hz display? The MacBook Pro’s only. Not the MacBook Air models.
It’s really just that simple. Apple views a 120Hz display as a “pro” feature, and thus, it’s only on “pro” devices. Now will this change in the future? We sure hope so. But as for now, it’s going to remain a Pro device feature.
Will Apple ever upgrade the iPhone from 60Hz?
At some point, Apple is going to need to upgrade the display on the non-Pro iPhone and make it a higher refresh rate display. But when will that happen? Who knows.
From a manufacturing standpoint, jumping to 90Hz doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, since it would only be used on two products. And that’s two of their less popular devices too. Surprisingly, the “Pro” iPhones have been Apple’s best-sellers the last few years. Meanwhile, Apple is using 120Hz on all of its “Pro” devices, making it a lot more cost effective, as they can buy those displays in bulk and get a better discount.
Until Apple rebrands 120Hz to something other than “ProMotion” I don’t see the regular iPhone getting a higher refresh rate display. Though, I would love to be wrong.