Apple rumours gather pace with new iPhone camera sensor, powerful VR headset likely

The cameras on the iPhone 13 Pro
A new 48MP camera sensor is set to be unveiled on the iPhone 14 Pro models. Photo credit: Newshub

The new year has barely started but rumours regarding the devices Apple will launch during 2022 are gathering pace and causing excitement online.

A new TrendForce report has backed up famed analyst Ming-Chi Kuo's previous claim the iPhone 14 Pro models are due to get an upgraded camera sensor, upgrading from 12 megapixels (MP) to 48MP. 

Apple Insider says that would bring "a significant improvement in the device's photography capabilities".

Megapixels alone don't determine the overall quality of an image - both the size and quality of the sensor make a bigger difference.

That's why the current iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max models can deliver pictures of similar looking quality to smartphones with larger MP cameras.

Larger sensors also means smaller pixels in an image, which can lead to reduced picture quality in low-light situations. Because of that there is speculation Apple will support 48MP for well-lit conditions and 12MP in darker ones, which can be achieved using 'four cell merge output mode', according to website

In that mode, the sensor has 48MP but they are grouped in clusters of four pixels, generating higher-quality 12MP images.

According to Kuo, only the more expensive Pro models will get the 48MP sensor.

Meanwhile analyst Ross Young is saying the much-criticised notch that hosts the front facing cameras on the iPhone is being replaced - but not just by the hole-punch previously rumoured.

"We now believe Apple will have a hole-plus-pill design on the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max models," Young wrote.

"The smaller hole will not be invisible. The two hole concept will be unique to Apple, like the notch, not similar to all the pill models from Huawei."

Rumours of a hole-plus-pill design first emerged in September last year thanks to an anonymous Apple leaker.

Apple's much-rumoured headset, said to offer both augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR), is going to be shipped with a 96 watt power charger according to Kuo.

That's the same power as the charger that comes with one of the new 14-inch MacBook Pros, which backs up previous rumours it will have a hugely powerful CPU and GPU units are likely true.

The MacBook model with that charger has a 10-Core CPU, 16-core GPU and a 16-core neural engine.

That kind of performance would necessitate a large, heavy battery for extended use - which may back-up Bloomberg's recent suggestion that the device is only intended to be used for short periods of time instead of all day.