The iPhone 15 Pro is Apple’s worst-reviewed premium phone ever

October 20, 2023
Wally Nowinski

A meta-analysis by PerfectRec of more than 690,000 user-generated reviews finds that early consumer reviews of the iPhone 15 are even worse than last year’s iPhone 14 lineup.

Now that the iPhone 15 has been on the market for nearly a month, our team at product recommendation site PerfectRec wanted to take a look at user-generated reviews to see how consumers were responding to Apple’s latest phone. What we found is that the iPhone 15 Pro is Apple’s worst reviewed premium model ever. 

Just 73% of consumers rated the iPhone 15 Pro five stars, down from 76% for the iPhone 14 Pro and 84% for the iPhone 13 Pro. The iPhone 15 Pro line featured a titanium case and a programmable action button that replaced the mute switch, as well as the expected incremental upgrades to the camera. The iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max release was plagued by a series of stories about overheating problems, which may have factored into its poor reception by early adopters. Apple has since released an update to address the overheating issue.  

The base and Plus model iPhones have had a better reception

Last year’s iPhone 14 had the worst reviews of any iPhone in a decade. While the early reviews for both the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max are even worse than the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, the base model iPhone 15 and 15 Plus have had a better reception. It’s hard to speculate why this might be the case. Like last year’s model, the changes to the iPhone 15 were mostly modest incremental improvements. The biggest change was replacing the lightning port with USB-C. The iPhone 15 was also the cheapest iPhone lineup since 2007, once you adjust for inflation. 

All iPhone 15 reviews

Early vs Late Adopters? 

While conducting our meta analysis of iPhone user reviews posted on Google, we went back and re-reviewed the results we previously found for iPhone 14 satisfaction. When we published that study on May 5th, 2023, we anticipated that reviewer sentiment might shift somewhat over time. What we found is that shifts seemed to be limited to certain models. 

The percent of customers giving the iPhone 14 Pro Max five stars is unchanged from our earlier study at 80%. On the other hand, the reviews for the base model iPhone 14 have improved since our earlier analysis. 76% of users give the iPhone 14 5 stars today, up from 72% five months ago. This is a statistically significant change with a P <0.001. 

We theorize that there is a bit of a gap between how early adopters view a product and how it is received by more typical consumers. The people who order an iPhone on launch day might have higher expectations and be more easily disappointed than those who purchase later in the year. 

The chats above use the latest iPhone 14 satisfaction numbers. 

Methodology & Limitations 

This meta analysis is based on 695,000 user-generated reviews posted on Google. The data was collected in October, 2023 and may change over time. 

It is possible that reviewer sentiment may change over time.

For any inquiries, please contact Wally Nowinski (

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