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Every iPhone 16 is set to gain the Action Button. Here’s what to know…


TL;DR: iPhone 16 Action Button

  • What is it? A physical button on the side of the iPhone that can be programmed for specific tasks. 📲
  • What about the mute switch? The Action Button replaces the mute switch. 🔕
  • What iPhones have it now? Only the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. 📱
  • What iPhones will get it? The iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max. 🔮

The iPhone 16 lineup is set to debut this September and there has been no shortage of rumors about it. We’ll recap all the rumors so far below, but first let’s get to one of the biggest rumored changes: the Action Button is reportedly coming to the entire iPhone 16 lineup.

This rumor has actually been floating around since last year when Apple introduced the Action Button on the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. When Apple released the iPhone 15 Pro series last year, here’s what the company said about the new Action Button:

“The all-new Action button replaces the single-function switch used to toggle between ring and silent, offering additional options so users can choose between quickly accessing the camera or flashlight; activating Voice Memos, Focus, Translate, and accessibility features like Magnifier; or using Shortcuts for more options. A press-and-hold gesture with fine-tuned haptic feedback and visual cues in the Dynamic Island ensure the new button launches the intended action.”

Apple

In short, the Action Button is a new physical button that replaces the mute switch. It’s about half the size of the volume button and gives haptic feedback (a vibration) when pressed. But unlike other buttons on the iPhone that one do one main thing, the Action Button is programmable—you can set it to carry out an action of your choice.

You can check out our deep dive into the Action Button on the iPhone 15 Pro series here.

The iPhone 15 Pro series gained the Action Button after Apple debuted the button a year earlier on the Apple Watch Ultra. Its addition was controversial to some iPhone users because they didn’t like that the Action Button meant Apple was doing away with the dedicated mute switch. But as the Action Button can be configured to work as the mute switch, this complaint doesn’t hold a lot of water.

It makes a lot of sense that Apple is adding the Action Button to the entry-level iPhone models this year. Apple frequently brings a new feature to the iPhone Pro series first to spur sales of its pricier handsets before adding the same features to the entry-level iPhone lineup the next year.

By adding the Action Button to the entry-level iPhone models, Apple is hoping to help differentiate them from previous entry-level iPhone models—perhaps stirring people to upgrade their iPhones sooner rather than later.

Besides the Action Button coming to the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Plus, the entry-level iPhone 16 series is also expected to be offered in seven colors—up from the current five colors available. The entire iPhone 16 lineup is also expected to see increases in their display sizes.

And when it comes to the iPhone 16 Pro series, both the iPhone 16 Pro and the iPhone 16 Pro Max are expected to gain a new camera lens technology that should reduce lens flares that appear in photos. 

Finally, it’s also possible that the iPhone 16 Pro may start at 256GB base storage instead of the 128GB it starts at now. 

However, as always, we’ll need to wait until September to know for sure what changes are coming to the iPhone 16 family.

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