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Recent coverage of the just-released iPhone 15 series of handsets has been intense, with plenty of reviews praising the cameras, the new design and much more. Less pleasing for Apple to read, though, is a focus on a problem that seems to be drawing persistent attention: overheating. Now, Ming-Chi Kuo from TFI Securities has added their opinion to the topic.
We’re all used to our phones getting a bit hot from time to time, sometimes for obvious causes such as playing a demanding video game, sometimes for absolutely no apparent reason.
I should say that in two weeks of non-stop testing of all four of the new iPhones, none of them has ever got hot at all. So, it’s not an issue for everyone.
But for the iPhone 15 series, things may be more serious. According to 9to5Mac , “widespread reports are circulating about the iPhone 15 overheating, seemingly across all models.” Some of the heating issues seem to apply when the phone is being charged, which may not be a problem as it’s not likely, though also not impossible, that you’d be using it much as it charges.
It's also worth pointing out that the first 24 hours of an iPhone’s life are not indicative of how the future will look and feel. That’s because most people transfer data from their old phone and the new handset is hard at work, night and day, to copy everything across.
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One Korean YouTuber, BullsLab, claims to have recorded an iPhone temperature with a thermal imaging camera and when testing the phone hard, playing games and doing benchmarks, says the phone hit 116 degrees Fahrenheit.
Now, Ming-Chi Kuo’s comments add further context. Kuo says that it’s not likely that the overheating is down to one of the all-new elements in the iPhone 15 Pro, the A17 Pro chip that was built using a 3 nanometer process – the first smartphone chips to use this.
This makes sense, given that iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus have seen overheating reports, and that processor isn’t in those phones.MORE FROM FORBES Apple iPhone 16 To Feature Surprising Design Choice, Report Claims By David Phelan
Kuo says in a report on Medium , “My survey indicates that the iPhone 15 Pro series overheating issues are unrelated to TSMC’s advanced 3nm node.”
So, what might it be? Kuo goes on, “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.”
I respect Kuo but I find it highly unlikely that Apple didn’t exhaustively test the new phones for exactly this. If Kuo is right, and it’s a medium-size if, them there is some hope. The analyst continues, “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.”
Exactly how widespread this issue is will become clearer with time. Sometimes, the reports are so loud that it disguises the fact that it’s the voices of the few rather than the many. Even so, Apple will want to address it quickly.