iPhone 14 models may not all get a 120Hz display upgrade

A line of iPhone 13 phones in various colors.
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple has only just unveiled the iPhone 13 flagships, but we're already deep into iPhone 14 leaks, and the latest concerns the display: it seems that at least one of next year's models is going to stick with the standard 60Hz screen refresh rate technology.

As per a report from South Korean outlet The Elec (via MacRumors), LTPS (Low Temperature Polycrystalline Silicon) OLED panels will be in the iPhone 14 mix to some extent, based on sources inside the Apple supply chain.

LTPS OLED means 60Hz refresh rates rather than the smoother 120Hz refresh rates possible with low LTPO (Low Temperature Polycrystalline Oxide) OLED screens, so it sounds as though we might have to wait until the iPhone 15 to get the super-fast refresh rates across the board.

A tale of two screen technologies

The iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13 use LTPS OLED (60Hz), while the iPhone 13 Pro and the iPhone 13 Pro Max use LTPO OLED (120Hz). There was the same split last year as well, with the iPhone 12 models.

The new information matches up with what industry analyst Ross Young has previously said about the iPhone 14 screens: that the iPhone 14 Pro and the iPhone 14 Pro Max would be the only models with LTPO tech and high refresh rate capabilities (a feature which Apple calls ProMotion).

That LTPO OLED technology would also enable Apple to deploy an in-screen Face ID scanner and selfie camera on the iPhone 14, removing the need for the notch completely – and again, that's something we've been tipped off about by earlier leaks.

Analysis: the iPhone 14 won't be all new

The top half of the front and back of the iPhone 13.

(Image credit: Apple)

With the iterative update that is the iPhone 13 now revealed, the general consensus is that the iPhone 14 is going to be a substantial upgrade as far as Apple smartphones go – one that makes up for the rather underwhelming improvements seen this year.

First and foremost, the word on the Apple street is that the iPhone 14 is finally going to ditch the notch. The notch got smaller with the iPhone 13, but by the time September 2022 rolls around, it could be gone completely – at least on the Pro models.

We've also seen unofficial renders of a flatter iPhone design without a camera bump that could be in the pipeline for next year. Along with the removal of the notch, it could be the first time that the iPhone has been given a major revamp in terms of its aesthetics since the iPhone X arrived in 2017.

However, what this new rumor suggests is that the iPhone 14 will still closely resemble the iPhone 13 in some ways – and that may well mean the two cheaper models in the range stick on a 60Hz refresh rate for another year.

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.