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iPhone 14 rumors: Battery life is looking up and Touch ID may be out

iPhone 13 Pro Max
(Image credit: Future)

Despite the many months before its expected launch, the iPhone 14 rumor mill is churning faster, with multiple alleged leaks cropping up.

Economic Daily News out of Taiwan reports that a new 5G chip from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) may help to boost the battery life on the iPhone 14, while a report from iDrop News asserts that an under-display Touch ID sensor didn't make the cut for iPhone 14 (via MacRumors).

iPhone 14 battery life bump

Let's focus on the positive rumor first; the iPhone 14 may benefit from moving to a 6nm radio chip produced by TSMC. For context, the current Qualcomm Snapdragon SDR865 chip in the iPhone 13 is 14nm. The dramatically smaller 6nm RF process should improve efficiency on both mmWave and sub-6GHz 5G. From an internal design standpoint, it also means the chip itself will be smaller, freeing up more room for other components if Apple resists the urge to shrink the phone's dimensions.

This rumor rings true as supply chain source claims hold up reasonably well this close to the launch of an iPhone, based on the sheer volume of orders needed for a primary iPhone component.

(Image credit: Front Page Tech/Renders By Ian)

No under-display Touch ID sensor for iPhone 14

The rumor that Apple will bring an under-display Touch ID sensor to the iPhone has circulated for a few years now. In 2019, the oft-reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed an under-display Touch ID sensor would arrive in 2021 (as reported by MacRumors), but obviously, that failed to materialize. Early iterations likely weren't reliable or fast enough for Apple, but Samsung has proven that this is no longer an issue over the last two years. 

According to the latest leak, the feature hit the cutting room floor again this year with the iPhone 14 hardware design locked in without an under-display sensor. It's possible that Apple feels that Face ID is good enough (particularly with the iOS 15.4 update), and for those that aren't satisfied, an Apple Watch can unlock your iPhone. With masks likely not going away entirely anytime soon, it will be a bit of a disappointment to prospective iPhone 14 buyers if this rumor proves true.

While it's plausible, this rumor is less convincing as the source doesn't have a strong track record. If accurate, we will undoubtedly see added support for this rumor from more proven sources in the coming months.

Sean Riley has been covering tech professionally for over a decade now. Most of that time was as a freelancer covering varied topics including phones, wearables, tablets, smart home devices, laptops, AR, VR, mobile payments, fintech, and more.  Sean is the resident mobile expert at Laptop Mag, specializing in phones and wearables, you'll find plenty of news, reviews, how-to, and opinion pieces on these subjects from him here. But Laptop Mag has also proven a perfect fit for that broad range of interests with reviews and news on the latest laptops, VR games, and computer accessories along with coverage on everything from NFTs to cybersecurity and more.