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Apple compromised on cooling in its pursuit of a lighter iPhone 15 Pro, claims analyst

A picture of the new iPhone 15 pro lineup

Apple made the iPhone 15 series official earlier this month and as always, the Pro models bring more to the table than their non-Pro siblings. For one, the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max feature a new Titanium build that makes them lighter. However, an analyst suggests Apple may have sacrificed the cooling system to achieve this weight reduction in the Pro series.

For the unaware, there have been widespread reports of heating problems on the iPhone 15 Pro models. Some users claimed their phones get too hot to even hold without a case. Various reports concluded, including this investigation from Android Authority, that the heating is likely caused due to the new A17 Pro chip.

Bar graphs showing iPhone 15 Pro temperature against Galaxy S23 Ultra Pixel 7 Pro

The Apple A17 Pro chip is manufactured on TSMC’s (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) 3nm process node. This also led to speculation that the new 3nm tech is to blame for overheating problems. However, popular analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests otherwise.

Kuo writes in his blog on Medium:

My survey indicates that the iPhone 15 Pro series overheating issues are unrelated to TSMC’s advanced 3nm node. The primary cause is more likely the compromises made in the thermal system design to achieve a lighter weight, such as the reduced heat dissipation area and the use of a titanium frame, which negatively impacts thermal efficiency.

Kuo says Apple will address the overheating problems of the iPhone 15 Pro through software updates. However, he warns the Cupertino company may struggle to make too many improvements without also compromising chip performance:

It’s expected that Apple will address this through software updates, but improvements may be limited unless Apple lowers processor performance. If Apple does not properly address this issue, it could negatively impact shipments over the product life cycle of the iPhone 15 Pro series.

It is yet to be known how Apple will deal with the heating issue on its phones. Is your new iPhone 15 also too hot to handle?

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