Apologies to those not interested in the minutia of Apple’s movements, but with (probably) less than a month until Apple unveils the iPhone 14, leakers have little else on their mind. 

And at least those who dislike Cook & Co’s products should get a little joy from this one. A prominent insider has claimed that a source with hands-on experience of the iPhone 14 Pro says the camera’s low-light performance isn’t up to snuff.

Granted, the third-hand nature of this account does, on the surface of things, feel a little patchy — kind of in the “you don’t know her, she goes to another school” genre of secrets. But the leaker in question, @LeaksApplePro, has a pretty good track record of revealing Apple’s movements before they’re public. Which is just as well given the username.

“There are some issues with the camera system,” the leaker reports. “The new 48MP sensor is ‘the best one in a smartphone if there’s enough light,’ but there’s some optimisation to do regarding night mode. Source says it’s worse than the 13 Pro in that field. There’s a substantial amount of noise.”

Obviously camera performance that’s sometimes worse than the previous generation isn’t a great look, but all’s not lost for Apple. The camera hardware — which you would hope and assume has been locked down for months — is only half of the equation. The other part is the software, which can see cameras that are under-specced on paper punch well above their weight. 

Several generations of Pixel had some of the best smartphone photography around, despite looking underpowered on paper, and it’s possible — probable even — that Apple isn’t done fine tuning the software to optimise the shots. “I’m sure Apple can work on that before launch,” @LeaksApplePro concludes.

Away from the camera, it’s mostly positive — though the Pro Max “feels like a brick (as usual)”, the leaker says. “Good luck if you have a MagSafe Duo. It’ll probably work but look horrible.”

The speakers, apparently, are vastly improved offering “more base [sic.] and overall clearer audio”, and it looks like the monster battery life of the Pro models will be improved further — possibly thanks to improved efficiency of the Pro-only A16 Bionic chipset. “Source isn’t 100% sure about this, but battery life is going up by a couple hours on the 14 Pro apparently,” the leaker tweets. “There wasn’t enough time to properly test this, but that was my source’s impression.”

Finally, that replacement for the notch. Y’know — the one pictured above (via Jon Prosser) that’s almost as incongruous as the thing it’s replacing? Apparently, it’s purely aesthetic — a differentiator between boring old iPhone 14 and all-singing, all-dancing iPhone 14 Pro. Consider it the equivalent of a conspicuous designer label on a tee-shirt.

“The new pill+hole doesn’t add anything new,” the leaker writes. “It looks different, but it pretty much works like the notch. Once you get used to it it’s ‘gone’.”

Were you really expecting anything else? Other than various high-end Android makers to offer remarkably similar looking camera arrays in the months ahead, of course.