Unlike comparisons between the 15 Pro Max and Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, where we’re relying on rumors and leaks from sources, Google has done the Google thing and just leaked a lot about the device itself. That means we can answer this question with confidence.
So, now that the iPhone 15 Pro is official, and the Google Pixel 8 Pro is (pretty much) official, does the latter give us enough reasons to suggest you wait? Let’s find out.
iPhone 15 Pro Max vs. Google Pixel 8 Pro: Specs
|Spec||iPhone 15 Pro/Pro Max||Google Pixel 8 Pro (rumored)|
|Screen size||6.1 inches / 6.7 inches||6.7 inches|
|Resolution||1179 x 2556 pixels / 1290 x 2796 pixels||1440 x 3210 pixels|
|Storage||128GB (15 Pro only), 256GB, 512GB, 1TB||128GB. 256GB, 512GB|
|CPU||A17 Pro (3nm)||Google Tensor G3 (4nm)|
|Cameras||48MP wide, 12MP ultrawide, 12MP telephoto (periscope lens on 15 Pro Max)||50MP wide, 64MP ultrawide, 48MP telephoto|
|Battery capacity||3,274 mAh (Pro), 4,422 mAh (Pro Max)||4,950 mAh|
|Design materials||Glass and Titanium||Glass and aluminum|
iPhone 15 Pro vs Google Pixel 8 Pro: Price
The rumors were true about iPhone 15 Pro Max getting a $100 price hike, thanks to Apple dropping the 128GB model and putting 256GB as its base. But the 128GB iPhone 15 Pro maintains that $999 price tag.
Meanwhile, there hasn’t been any price leaks surrounding the Google Pixel 8 Pro. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if they kept the same cost as the Pixel 7 Pro to undercut Apple’s efforts:
- Google Pixel 8 Pro: $899
- iPhone 15 Pro: $999
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: $1,199
This alone is probably enough of a reason for me to say you should probably wait and see what Google’s cooking up. But let’s go deeper and see what other differences you can expect to see.
iPhone 15 Pro vs. iPhone 15 Pro: Design
- iPhone 15 Pro Max gets a titanium redesign with slightly curved edges
- Goodbye, Lightning. iPhone 15 Pro Max gets USB-C! You can thank the EU for that one
- Google Pixel 8 Pro may finally opt for a flat display instead of a curved one
- Pixel 8 colors confirmed in a full 360-degree view — Google is dropping Hazel
iPhone 15 Pro’s transition to Titanium makes for a redesign that is small but impactful. The iPhone’s traditional mute toggle has been replaced with an Action Button, the metal band now has a slight curvature to make the phone a little more comfortable in the hand, and the Lightning port is gone!
Thanks to the whole Apple vs EU saga, the Union legislation has forced Apple’s hand to adopt this standardized port, and I could not be more excited to see the back of Lightning (though I have a lot of useless cables now).
Flipping over to the Pixel 8 Pro, in true Google fashion, the company decided to beat the leakers and just reveal the phone in all of its 360-degree glory on a Pixel Simulator. Through this, we’ve noticed some similarly small, but important tweaks to improve the experience.
It starts by ditching the curved edges of the screen in favor of a flat panel. I was always baffled at this decision on Pixel 7 Pro, given the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7A both didn’t have any curvature, so it’s good to see Google has brought its big brother in line.
While nothing about dimensions has been leaked, given the near-identical form factor, it’s fair to say that we’ll see the size remain the same too.
|Phone||Google Pixel 8 Pro||Google Pixel 8||iPhone 15 Pro Max||iPhone 14 Pro Max|
|Size||155.6 x 73.2 x 8.7 mm||162.6 x 76.5 x 8.7mm||159.9 x 76.7 x 8.25 mm||160.7 x 77.6 x 7.85 mm|
|Weight||197 grams||212 grams||221 grams||240 grams|
You will get the same color-coordinated slab with a bold aluminum protrusion across the back housing the camera bump. It certainly stands out from the more generic smartphones out there.
Not only that, but Google has bested Apple when it comes to battery capacity too.
- Google Pixel 8 Pro: 4,950mAh
- iPhone 15 Pro: 3,274mAh
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: 4,422mAh
Of course, battery life is not all based around the size of the battery inside — a lot of the formula comes down to software optimization and the power draw of components too. But in reality, a bigger battery is always going to help the situation.
It’s fortunate to see the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max’s battery capacity go up (especially after the weak longevity of the iPhone 14 Pro), but the Pixel 8 Pro is going into this face-off with a numbers advantage.
iPhone 15 Pro Max vs Google Pixel 8 Pro: Display
- iPhone 15 Pro: 6.1-inch, Super Retina XDR OLED display, 2556 x 1179-pixel resolution, 120Hz adaptive refresh rate
- iPhone 15 Pro Max: 6.7-inch, Super Retina XDR OLED display, 2796 x 1290-pixel resolution, 120Hz adaptive refresh rate
- Google Pixel 8 Pro: 6.7-inch, LTPO AMOLED display, 2992 x 1344-pixel resolution, 120Hz adaptive refresh rate
The iPhone 15 Pro’s display remains largely identical to last year’s model — same resolution, same LTPO technology, and the same adaptive refresh rate from 1-120Hz. For the next big display upgrade, you’ll have to wait for the iPhone 16, which is rumored to make the jump to a micro lens array (MLA) that provides better brightness and power efficiency.
Google’s Pixel 8 Pro panel (beyond being a flat display rather than curved at the edges) is rumored to get a brightness upgrade from 1,400 to 1,600 nits peak brightness, which is 400 less than the 2,000 nits you can get from the 15 Pro.
iPhone 15 Pro vs. Google Pixel 8 Pro: Processor
- iPhone 15 Pro: A17 Pro with 6-core CPU, 6-core GPU, and 16-core Neural Engine
- Google Pixel 8 Pro: Google Tensor G3 with nine-core CPU, and Immortalis-G715s MC10 GPU
The iPhone 15 Pro makes the leap over to TSMC’s 3-nanometer process with A17 Pro — packing 19 billion transistors in A17 Pro (up from 16 billion in A16 Bionic), 10% faster CPU performance, 20% faster graphics, and support hardware-accelerated ray tracing.
We’ve also been seeing some leaked Geekbench results that show just how much of a monster this chip is (especially in single-core performance). In fact, it’s almost as fast as the Intel Core i9-13900K CPU when it comes to this metric. For the laptop geeks out there (I mean, of course you are, you’re reading this), these performance gains should get you excited for what the M3 chipset has in store.
Google’s Tensor G3 chipset is built on a 4-nanometer process, and looks like it will get an impressive update in performance too. It starts with a nine-core CPU with a top speed of 3.00GHz, and the 10-core Immortalis variant of the G715 GPU could also unlock ray tracing capabilities too.
You can also look forward to Google upgrading what Tensor is well known for — its AI smarts. Codenamed “Rio,” this new TPU runs at a faster speed, and looks set to increase speeds of processing AI and Machine Learning tasks.
iPhone 15 Pro vs. Google Pixel 8 Pro: Cameras
- iPhone 15 Pro Max gets an updated 48MP wide camera, and the brand new 12MP 5x telephoto with periscope lens (or tetraprism, if you’re nasty)
- Google Pixel 8 Pro could be getting an upgraded 50MP main camera, and a huge resolution improvement to the ultrawide to the tune of 64MP
The iPhone 15 Pro continues Apple’s lineage of offering stellar camera systems, as the 48MP sensor has been updated with a wider aperture. Beyond that, the Pro Max ditches the standard telephoto lens (which has a fixed magnification in the 15 Pro), and makes the leap to a 5X periscope lens, although Apple refers to it as a tetraprism design.
|Phone||Google Pixel 8 Pro||iPhone 15 Pro||iPhone 15 Pro Max|
|Wide camera||50MP wide (25mm f/1.9)||48MP wide (24mm f/1.78)||48MP wide (24mm f/1.78)|
|Ultrawide camera||64MP ultrawide||12MP ultrawide (13mm f/2.2)||12MP ultrawide (13mm f/2.2)|
|Telephoto camera||48MP telephoto (120mm f/3.5)||12MP telephoto (77mm f/1.78) w/ 3x optical zoom||12MP periscope telephoto w/ 5x optical zoom (120mm f/2.8 aperture)|
But if smartphone aficionados know one thing, it’s that Google really brings the heat in the photography department, and the Pixel 8 Pro is no different. Rumors point towards an upgraded 25mm 50MP wide sensor that makes the most of Tensor G3’s power and AI to deliver new features like staggered HDR for improved low light performance, and the capability to record 8K video.
On top of that, Google’s software camera smarts could expand into Video unblur, which would provide impressive clarity to video after the fact. Add a renovated 64MP ultrawide for more detail than what you’d get on the 12MP of the 15 Pro, and the Pixel 8 Pro could be the phone to beat for snapping pictures.
I make no bones about the iPhone 15 Pro bringing some impressive updates to hardware design, cameras, and its peak performance. But given what seems to be coming down the line from Google Pixel 8 Pro, you should really wait to see what is being cooked up.
Sure, I’m confident that the 15 Pro will continue Apple’s championship run as the fastest smartphone on the planet, and the camera will be great. On top of that, iOS 17 has brought some warmly welcomed changes to the software side of it.
However, Google’s skinned version of Android is capable of great AI-driven features that Apple is still catching up with, the Tensor G3 looks set to bring the generational leap we were missing with Pixel 7, and that camera system may pip the Cupertino crew to the post with upgrades to both hardware and software.
It’s a short wait until October 4. Sit tight, and see what the big G brings to the table.