All iPhone 14 Models May Feature 120Hz ProMotion Displays
Apple could offer its ProMotion display technology, which allows for a higher 120Hz refresh rate, across all models of the 2022 iPhone lineup after it's expected to debut the technology in the iPhone for the first time later this year.
It's been widely reported that Apple plans to include a 120Hz refresh rate in this year's iPhone 13 lineup, but exclusive to only the high-end iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max. The lower-end iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini are not expected to include ProMotion technology. For the iPhone 13 lineup, Apple is enlisting two separate suppliers for its displays.
For the LTPO displays on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max, Apple will use panels produced by Samsung, which reportedly began production in May. On the other hand, for the lower-end iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini, which will feature LTPS displays, Apple will rely on LG.
For the 2022 iPhones, Apple is switching up the structure of its mobile lineup. Unlike the iPhone 12 and upcoming iPhone 13, which feature one 5.4-inch, two 6.1-inch, and one 6.7-inch model, the tentatively named "iPhone 14" series in 2022 will consist of two 6.1-inch and two 6.7-inch models.
With that new lineup, a new report from The Elec offers some color as to the state of Apple's display suppliers next year. The report says that LG, which currently only produces LTPS displays for Apple's low-end iPhones, will convert its production lines to supply Apple with displays capable of a 120Hz refresh rate.
If true, both of Apple’s main display suppliers, Samsung and LG, will be able to provide LTPO OLED displays, which may give Apple the option to include ProMotion technology across its entire iPhone 14 lineup.
While purely speculative, there are reasons to believe Apple may indeed go down this route. Currently, besides different screen sizes and finishes, the high-end and low-end iPhones share the same fundamental iPhone design. All models consist of the same notch-based design that first appeared in the iPhone X, making the only real differences between battery capacities and varying camera capabilities.
Next year, Apple could be planning its most significant design change to the iPhone in years, potentially abandoning the notch in favor of a "punch-hole" design for some models. According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, some models of the 2022 iPhone series won't feature a notch but instead a "punch-hole display design" that's similar to some of Samsung's high-end Galaxy smartphones.
Kuo says the new design will debut in the high-end models at a minimum, possibly meaning the lower-end devices will retain the same notch-based design. In the iPhone 13 lineup, Apple will likely market the ProMotion display technology as the reason the higher-end iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max deserve their "Pro" nomenclature.
If the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max feature a "punch-hole" screen design, the high-end models of the lineup will be further differentiated from the non-Pro devices. That differentiation may provide Apple with leeway to expand the 120Hz refresh rate to all models without potentially devaluing the prestige its "Pro" devices hold.