iOS 15 is compatible with many iPhones released several years ago. Unfortunately, these older iPhones lack some of the new features in the update. Indeed, some options require an A12 chip, or a newer component, to function. Here are which ones.
The iOS 15 update is compatible with all iPhones that have been able to install iOS 14. Thus, iPhones released several years ago can upgrade to the latest version of the operating system. This is particularly the case of iPhone 6S / 6S Plus or iPhone SE first generation.
However, these older iPhones cannot take advantage of all the new features of iOS 15. To be able to use some of the options introduced during WWDC 2021, it is necessary to have un iPhone XS, un iPhone XS Max, un iPhone XR or an even more recent model.
Here are the new iOS 15 features that don’t work on old iPhones
As Apple explains on its official website, some of the features require at least one A12 chip. This chipset differs from previous Apple SoCs by a Neural Engine with 8 cores, against only 2 for the A11 chip on the iPhone X. Here is the list of the new features of the update that are not available on the iPhone launched before the iPhone XS:
- Space Audio on FaceTime
- Portrait Mode on FaceTime
- Apple Maps: the interactive 3D globe, ultra-detailed maps and an immersive walking route
- Interactive text within photos: in particular, it is possible to copy paste words that appear in an image
- Siri offline mode with local request processing
- The Google Lens-style photo app (with information about the elements on the screen)
- The animated backgrounds of the new Weather application
- Store house, hotel, office and car keys in the Wallet app
Also note that some iOS 15 options that older iPhones are deprived of do not depend on the A12 chip. Thus, the functionality which anticipates the risk of falls is reserved for models released from the iPhone 8. Finally, the spatial audio, recently deployed on Apple Music, with tracking of the movements of the head, is confined to the iPhone 7 or more recent.