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iPhone 16 Pro 256GB rumor makes sense, but is by a known falsifier

iPhone 15 Pro Max

The new rumor that the iPhone 16 Pro could start with 256GB of storage across the board is a logical extrapolation, but has been made by a one-time serial leaker with a record for falsehoods.

The Apple rumor mill contains both leakers with valid sources and people with less reliable ways to get information. In some instances, the leaker can be offering up details that are presented as a genuine rumor, but could also just as easily be an educated guess thrown out for consumption.

Late on Monday, leaker "LeaksApplePro" posted to X a rumor that the iPhone 16 Pro lineup will start at 256GB of storage. Expanding the reasoning via a Mac Observer post penned by the leaker, they go on to cite "people close to the industry" on the matter.

For the iPhone 15 Pro line, Apple launched the smaller model with 128GB of storage, but it increased the capacity of the base model Pro Max to 256GB. The iPhone 16 Pro range is said to be increasing the base storage to 256GB across the board, making the two even.

A guess from a serial fabricator

There are issues with leak. The content of the leak isn't the main issue.

Apple's decision to offer differing capacities in the same iPhone range was unusual at the time. But, given that Apple does prefer to offer the same base specifications within a product line, and the consistent trend of gradual storage increases over time, this is an obvious guess to make and has a decent chance of being correct.

The leaker's article doesn't offer much hope either, advising they received it from "people close to the industry." Not someone in the "supply chain" or from a "survey of suppliers."

LeaksApplePro's X post about iPhone 16 Pro storage capacities
LeaksApplePro's X post about iPhone 16 Pro storage capacities

This is an extremely dodgy source claim. The claim can encompass pretty much anyone, like a mother of someone on a Foxconn assembly line.

The biggest problem with the claim is that the leaker themselves has a record of fabrications when it comes to the leaks they publish.

The biggest example of their unreliability was a claim they were inside Apple Park for the recording of the iPhone 12 event, during the COVID-19 pandemic. They had tweeted an image of Apple Park as "proof" they were there, though the real source was easily tracked down via a Google search.

At the time, they also claimed CEO Tim Cook threw everyone out of the building for leaking everything.

The most damning part of that affair was that every single thing they "leaked" during the recording was wrong, with 100% inaccuracy. The incident pretty much solidified LeaksApplePro as a sourceless leaker either trying to make a name for themselves or attempting to get fame with their claims.

And, the claims that they made about iOS 17 and the iPhone 15 that led to our April implementation of the Rumor Score were all fabrications as well.

A legitimization problem

AppleInsider readers are smart and have long memories. We know that you can remember the fabricators, and when they try redemption.

We, and our friends at 9to5Mac, MacRumors, iMore, and other venues are very aware of every leaker's track record. Bigger and more mainstream outlets are unlikely to spend time tracking leaker reliability, and will end up publishing the claims as gospel, and without context.

We know this to have happened in the past with LeaksApplePro's claims. It happened extensively during the aforementioned Apple Park "recording" period.

We're concerned that Mac Observer published the leak. They did so as an article authored by the leaker themselves.

Granted, it's possible that editors at publication could have vetted the leaker's claims, seen some sort of evidence that it's probably true, and then went ahead with production. It's incredibly unlikely, though, given the leaker's history of deceit.

A milquetoast prediction like this is probably the next step of a redemption tour, which started with the hiring at Mac Observer.

There's been a lot going on behind the scenes at Mac Observer in the last few years, which we won't delve into. We know this first-hand as we hired a staffer that left when ownership changed.

We believe that the publication has erred deeply in legitimization of this particular leaker to spread their claims further. The leaker may well be right with their claim based on wild guesswork on this occasion. It's a logical extrapolation, and the only reason we're considering it "possible."

It's just not based on anything tangible. Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

Update April 16, 1:53 PM ET Mac Observer has retracted the rumor post.