Apple's Pursuit of Camera Phone Dominance: Leaked Details of iPhone 16, 17 Pro Max

It feels like only yesterday that Apple revealed the iPhone 15 to us at its annual WWDC conference earlier this year. However, for those inside Apple Park, the success of the brand’s latest smartphone lineup is the culmination of years of hard work and planning.

According to one industry analyst, Apple’s latest plans for the iPhone include some major upgrades to its camera array which could further bolster its place as a solid companion to the upcoming Vision Pro headset. As reported by MacRumors, a research note focusing on Largan Precision, the world’s premiere manufacturer and supplier of smartphone camera lenses, has seen analyst Jeff Pu claim that Apple’s iPhone 17 Pro Max will feature an upgraded 48-megapixel (MP) Telephoto camera.

While this refresh would bring the Telephoto lens in line with the iPhone 15’s main shooter, it would leave the iPhone’s ultrawide lens trailing behind at a lower resolution. That is, if earlier in the year we hadn’t already heard about the iPhone 16 Pro’s 48MP boost in that area also.

With the way iPhone upgrades are incremental improvements, there’s a real claim that by the iPhone 17, the Pro Max model could be outfitted with a triple camera array, with wide, ultrawide and Telephoto all being 48MP.

This wouldn’t just be good news for iPhone owners either, as the even 48MP spread would also make good for Vision Pro owners too. We already know how Apple is making use of the smartphone’s main and ultrawide cameras to record side-by-side 3D video, so the bump in resolution will only further improve the results captured and lead to even more vivid results within the headset itself.

It seems incredibly early to be hearing word about these models. But as mentioned, an Apple product is the result of years of planning and prototyping before it’s ready to take a seat on store shelves.

Still, that prototyping leaves times for plans to change, and this could change too. However, according to Pu, Apple is currently expecting this to be the roadmap for the iPhone camera array for at least the next two major releases – and that still leaves room for the main shooter to receive a healthy boost also. Though, how much of a limit Apple place on its main lens would remain to be seen.

Either way, to see this plan play out in its entirety, we could be waiting until Sept. 2025 to see the full 48MP array arrive at iPhone 17 Pro models. That’s some time off, and leaves plenty of room for Apple to switch things up.