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Gurman: iOS 16 to include always-on display feature ahead of iPhone 14 Pro

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In his latest edition of the Power On newsletter, Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman says iOS 16 could finally include an always-on display feature for the future iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. Once rumored to arrive with the iPhone 13 Pro, it seems the next flagship phone from Apple could feature this long-awaited function.

Gurman writes in his newsletter:

I’m told iOS 16 builds in future support for an always-on lock screen, something Apple was originally planning for last year’s iPhone 13. This would allow the iPhone to turn down the frame rate significantly on the lock screen and display quickly glanceable information – similar to newer Apple Watches.

The journalist says he was told that “the always-on display mode is an exclusive to the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max models (…) if the feature ever makes the cut.”

For context, back in December of 2020, a report indicated that an always-on mode could arrive thanks to the LTPO display.

Apple is planning to apply LTPO TFT to higher-tier iPhone models launching next year. It has used the low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (LTPS) TFT process so far. An oxide TFT process will be added to become LPTO TFT.

LTPO panels allow variable refresh rates. Dropping the refresh rate down to an extremely low rate means it uses a lot less power, which is what enables the always-on display on the Apple Watch Series 5.

With the iPhone 13 Pro, Apple finally added a 120Hz panel with a refresh rate, but it varies between 10Hz and 120Hz, different from the Apple Watch which can also update the refresh rate one time every minute.

The always-on display feature would also be a nice addition to the iPhone 14 Pro line, once a redesign is expected with a new hole-punch + pill cutout to replace the notch.

Alongside the always-on display feature, the rumored iPhone 14 Pro is expected to have the A16 Bionic chip and a 48-megapixel back camera.

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