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iPhone 15 Pro is not just a smartphone – it’s a new gaming console!

Get ready for some serious shake-up in the mobile gaming world because Apple is about to change the game with the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. They’re set to accomplish something that no other Android maker has managed to pull off until now: deliver a real mobile gaming experience!

During its annual iPhone launch event, Apple just casually dropped the news that you can now play top-notch triple-A video games on their iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. And guess what? It’s not some stripped-down version – these games run native, right on the device, no cloud gaming required! And just in case you’re wondering, triple-A games are those high-end, premium titles you usually find on the likes of PS5, Xbox Series X, or PC.

A major shift in the mobile gaming scene

Mobile gaming used to be held back by a major issue: the absence of top-notch games with stunning graphics and immersive experiences. It’s improving, but there are still some roadblocks. While mobile esports has been on fire for quite a while, traditional core gaming has often viewed mobile as a less capable option. But now, with the surge in handheld devices like the Steam Deck, ROG Ally, and Lenovo Legion Go in recent years, we’re witnessing a game-changing shift in the landscape.

So, there’s a hungry market out there craving improved mobile gaming experiences, and Apple is seizing that opportunity. When the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max hit the market, they’ll be rocking the super-fast A17 Pro chip. This bad boy can handle real-time ray-traced graphics, a feat we’ve never witnessed on a mobile gadget. So, not only will these mobile games run smoothly on the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, but they’ll probably look even better than if you played them on your average gaming PC.

Also read: iPhone 15 series launched in India. iPhone 15 Pro Max to cost a whopping Rs 2 lakh!

What games are coming to the iPhone 15 Pro

Apple dropped the bomb that they’re bringing Assassin’s Creed Mirage, an upcoming game from Ubisoft’s hit franchise, to the iPhone 15 Pro. What’s more, this device is going all-in with hardware-accelerated ray-tracing dynamic lighting effects. This isn’t just another chapter in the iPhone’s already impressive gaming journey.

Remember when the original iPhone opened its doors to third-party developers? It completely revolutionized the gaming landscape, and today’s gaming giants are all mobile developers. But, let’s be honest, it never quite encroached on the territory dominated by console makers and PCs. Despite numerous attempts, even the Mac hasn’t quite found its footing there over the years.

Games coming to iPhone 15 Pro:

  • Resident Evil Village
  • Resident Evil 4 Remake
  • Assassin’s Creed Mirage
  • Death Stranding

Apple doesn’t want to rely on dedicated gaming hardware

Looks like Apple is making a serious push into the mobile gaming arena with the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max. While other developers are mulling over new gadgets, Apple went ahead and souped-up what they already had, cramming in the speediest chip ever seen in a cellphone. And it gets even cooler – you can now pair up Bluetooth controllers like the PS5’s DualSense or Xbox controller with the iPhone 15, so no more struggling with pesky touchscreen controls.

Imagine you’re on a train, and you whip out your brand-new iPhone 15 Pro Max. You pair up a controller and bam! You’re playing Assassin’s Creed Mirage within seconds. But here’s the catch: the iPhone 15 Pro kicks off at about Rs. 1,34,900, and the Pro Max is even pricier at Rs. 1,59,900. Sure, you could go for something like an Asus ROG Ally for less money, but let’s be real, everyone needs a phone, right?

Can the iPhone 15 Pro really handle AAA games?

Absolutely! The iPhone 15 Pro is unquestionably more potent than a PS4, that’s crystal clear. In theory, there’s no technical hurdle preventing a console or PC game from running on an iPhone when it comes to sheer raw power. The A17 Pro chip, exclusively featured in the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, takes the cake as the world’s inaugural 3nm chip, boasting an astonishing 19 billion transistors.

In the real world, when you stack up the A17 Pro chip against the A16 Bionic chip that runs the iPhone 14 Pro, Apple predicts a performance bump of around 10%. When it comes to the GPU, the improvement is even more substantial, thanks to an extra core (6 cores now, compared to the previous 5), which should give you a performance boost of around 20%.

The A17 Pro can also handle hardware ray tracing acceleration, just like it does with Metal FX scaling. This tech, which is in the same league as Nvidia’s DLSS and Intel’s XeSS, has been brought over from Macs to enhance console and PC game ports.

From a technical standpoint, there shouldn’t be any roadblocks preventing a game like Assassin’s Creed: Mirage from hitting at least 30 FPS in 1080p on the iPhone 15 Pro. When it comes to the practicality, or at least the significance, of ray tracing, I’m a bit more cautious. I have a strong hunch that ports of many games will involve some graphical downgrades; that part feels almost inevitable.

Also read: Android System Intelligence explained: What is it and what are its uses

iPhone 15 Pro could render gaming hardware obsolete

The iPhone might just secure Apple a spot as the go-to platform for blockbuster, big-budget game releases. That A17 Pro chip fueling the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max is right up there with the processors in devices like the Steam Deck, Asus ROG Ally, Lenovo Legion Go, and all those other compact console PCs making waves. Plus, when you team it up with accessories like the Backbone One USB-C controller – which is already on board for the iPhone 15 launch – it looks like the iPhone 15 Pro could render standalone gaming hardware obsolete.

Now, even though the iPhone has all the technical muscle, a huge user base, and some heavyweight game industry buddies on its side, there are some potential stumbling blocks to it becoming a true AAA game console. Developing for iOS is still a bit of a stretch compared to Windows (or even SteamOS, which doesn’t require separate targeting). However, Apple is making efforts in that direction with compatibility tools, especially after its WWDC developer event earlier this year.

The A17 Pro chip is expected to make its way down the iPhone lineup next year. Apple’s rapid processor advancements suggest that even the basic iPhone models will likely become more gaming-friendly at a much quicker pace than traditional console generations. This might outpace niche devices like the Steam Deck, which aren’t likely to receive annual upgrades due to the cost-benefit considerations involved.

Besides, with its video output capabilities and wide-ranging support for controllers from various manufacturers, iPhone 15 Pro has the potential to not only replace a handheld AAA console but also one in your living room. The reasons for this shift are becoming increasingly appealing and abundant, and the 15 Pro seems poised to be the generation that breaks down those barriers, making “Coming to PS5, Xbox Series X, and iPhone” the standard headline in the gaming industry.

A different experience altogether

Making console and PC games work with touch controls is bound to be a tricky task. You’ve got to worry about gameplay comfort and making sure the interface is easy to read, especially when you’ve got a bunch of virtual buttons cluttering up the screen during play.

The straightforward fix here would be to make the most of Bluetooth controller support. Pair that up with Apple’s wide selection of MFI (made for iPhone) accessories, and you’ve got plenty of options to choose from.

That said, if Apple can pull off a steady lineup of top-tier games that run like a charm without compromising on graphics, there’s a good chance lots of folks would pick up an iPhone and let their Switch collect some dust.

Vishal Kawadkar
About author

With over 8 years of experience in tech journalism, Vishal is someone with an innate passion for exploring and delivering fresh takes. Embracing curiosity and innovation, he strives to provide an informed and unique outlook on the ever-evolving world of technology.