iPhone 15 range releasing in New Zealand on September 22

Apple has unveiled its new iPhone 15 range, which is set to release in Aotearoa from September 22 with prices starting at NZ$1649 for the standard model, NZ$2099 for the Pro and $2499 for the Pro Max.

The new devices were revealed during a 'Wonderlust' event at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park in Cupertino, California on Tuesday morning (Wednesday morning NZT).

The latest Apple Watch models were also revealed with a new gesture control feature that allows users to perform various functions by tapping their thumb and forefinger together.

The iPhone 15 range was predicted to launch with higher base prices in the US than the iPhone 14 range, but they were announced as being the same. 

In New Zealand, the launch price of the base iPhone 15 is $50 more than that of the iPhone 14. The iPhone 15 Pro's launch price starts at $100 more than that of the iPhone 14 Pro did, the new Plus starts at $150 more than last year's and the least expensive Pro Max model is $300 more compared to last year's.

The 1TB version of the iPhone 15 Pro Max will cost $3299.

The iPhone 15 range is the first Apple phone range to feature USB-C ports for charging, which has been introduced after the European Union (EU) voted to approve legislation to require all small devices like smartphones, tablets, digital cameras and portable speakers to use USB-C charging by 2024. 

Apple iPhone 15's range of colours.
Apple iPhone 15's range of colours. Photo credit: Apple

This means the same cord that charges new iPhones will be able to also charge almost all modern Android phones and other devices.

It also allows reverse charging, so users can recharge things like their Airpods case from their iPhone.

Colour-wise, the iPhone 15 standard and Plus models will come in pink, yellow, blue, green and black, while the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max offer black, white, blue and natural titanium.

The dynamic island, A16 bionic chip and 48MP camera features from last year's Pro models have been brought onto the standard models for the 15 range. However, the always-on display and 120Hz display features have not been carried over to the standard models, despite their equivalents being offered in comparable Android phones from the likes of Samsung and Oppo.  

The iPhone 15 Pro models come in a new titanium case, which is lighter and tougher than the stainless steel of previous models.

The Pro devices have also replaced the mute switch on the side of the phone with a programmable action button.

The iPhone 15 Pro's launch price is $100 more than that of the iPhone 14 Pro.
The iPhone 15 Pro's launch price is $100 more than that of the iPhone 14 Pro. Photo credit: Apple

Apple's latest chip, the A17, will power the new Pro models, which the company called a "major step forward" and the most powerful ever created. It is its first 3 nanometer chip, featuring 17 billion transistors and a six-core CPU.

That extra power is meant to appeal to mobile gamers in particular, with Apple showing off how well it runs demanding modern games. Developers of franchises like Resident Evil and The Division appeared during the Wonderlust livestream to commend the A17's mobile gaming capabilities.  

Some camera upgrades have been introduced to the Pro models, but the greatest will only be available on the Pro Max in the form of a 5x optical zoom, Apple's best yet.

New professional photography features have been enabled for the Pro models with the USB-C port, too, such as recording ProRes video directly to an external source such as a laptop or desktop.

The Pro models will also be able to shoot spatial videos to later be viewable with a Vision Pro headset.

Roadside Assistance via Satellite is being added to the iPhone 15 range, for US users only at launch, which is similar to the SOS via Satellite feature introduced last year. It will be used when there is no cellular or Wi-Fi connection available and users need help. 

During the Wonderlust event, Apple spoke at length of its latest sustainability achievements, including the new Apple Watch devices being the company's first carbon neutral products.

In addition to the 'Double Tap' gesture feature, the Watch Series 9 also features an upgraded S9 chip that gives it more power. 

Apple's new Double Tap feature.
Apple's new Double Tap feature. Photo credit: Apple

The new watches process Siri requests on device rather than connecting to an iPhone via the cloud to do so. This makes it a more securely private process and because of that, Apple is now allowing Siri to access user health data.

Finding your phone when it's lost will be easier with the new watches due to an animated locator feature similar to that of Airtags. 

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 also features the S9 chip and Double Tap as well as a greater level of brightness (3000 nits) and upgraded features for its primary target market of divers, hikers, mountain climbers and other extreme users.

The battery life of the new watch models has not been increased, with the same 18 hours promised for Series 9 as previous models.

Pre-orders opened today ahead of the devices being available on September 22.

New Zealand pricing inclusive of GST is as follows:

iPhone 15

  • iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus starts at $1649 and RRP $1849, respectively

iPhone 15 Pro 

  • Phone 15 Pro starts at RRP $2099, iPhone 15 Pro Max starts at RRP $2499


  • Beginning 19 September, iCloud+ will offer two new plans: 6TB for $49.99 per month and 12TB for $99.99 per month

Apple Watch 

  • Apple Watch Series 9 starts at RRP $749, Apple Watch SE starts at RRP $469 
  • Apple Watch Ultra 2 is RRP $1599


  • AirPods Pro (2nd generation) with USB-C is RRP $479.

Newshub travelled to California courtesy of Apple for this story.