iPhone 15 tipped for a big Wi-Fi upgrade - but will it be limited to the Pro?

The iPhone 15 is tipped to get the same advanced Wi-Fi as the latest Macs, but will the standard model be included?

iPhone 14 Pro
(Image credit: Apple)

If you're anything like me, your iPhone probably spends much more time on Wi-Fi than it does using mobile data – so the better the Wi-Fi, the better your iPhone experience. Like the rest of the current range, my iPhone 14 Pro has Wi-Fi 6. That's pretty fast, but the Wi-Fi in the new 14-inch and 16-inch M2 MacBook Pros and Mac minis is better still – and that's the version tipped for the iPhone 15.

According to a research note by Barclays analysts, as shared by MacRumors, Wi-Fi 6E is coming to the iPhone 15. However, it's currently unclear whether that means the entire iPhone 15 range or just the Pro and Ultra models.

Why you'll want Wi-Fi 6E in your iPhone 15

The big difference between Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E is that the latter uses an extra frequency band: the E stands for Extended. 

Wi-Fi 6 is dual band on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, but Wi-Fi 6E also uses the considerably less congested 6GHz bands. Those frequencies aren't used by any previous Wi-Fi standards, so for the time being at least the rest of your and your neighbours' Wi-Fi devices won't be using that part of the radio spectrum.

Provided your router also supports it, that means faster speeds, less interference and less lag: your iPhone will have an uncluttered, exclusive connection that isn't fighting for bandwidth with your smart home devices or your Smart TV. And as ever it's backwards compatible so you'll be able to use your iPhone with any Wi-Fi access point, irrespective of its Wi-Fi version.

I'm hoping that Apple does the same with Wi-Fi 6E as it did with Wi-Fi 6 and brings it to every iPhone, not just the most expensive ones. But given Apple is reportedly planning to limit its newest chipsets to the Pro/Ultra models in order to differentiate them from the standard models, it's possible that lesser iPhones might not get the tech until the iPhone 16.

Carrie Marshall

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written more than a dozen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote seven more books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com).