As iPhone 11 season continues, rumors begin to pick up about what is in store for the 2020 iPhone. Many are expecting significant design changes after three years of the same iPhone X series chassis (perhaps with a more squared off design reminiscent of the iPhone 4).

The Chinese version of a new Digitimes report claims that next year’s iPhone will feature a 120Hz screen like the ProMotion iPad Pros, except the iPhone will be a high refresh rate OLED panel whereas the iPad is LCD. All iPhones to date include 60Hz displays.

Apple first introduced 120Hz screens to iOS in 2017 with the 10.5-inch iPad Pro and 12.9-inch iPad Pro. The refresh rate doubling dramatically improves the responsiveness of the user experience with user gestures more quickly being translated into on-screen motion.

This means scrolling and swiping feels significantly more fluid. 120Hz also allows the screen to accurately depict 24 FPS, 48 FPS, and 60 FPS video content.

On current phones, the 60Hz display cannot evenly display every frame of a 24 FPS video as 60/24 is a fractional result. This means the phone must repeat frames or interpolate artificial frames to make up the difference.

However, As 24 neatly divides into 120, each frame of a 24 FPS video can be shown on a ProMotion screen for the same duration — resulting in a smoother video watching experience.

There are several Android phones on the market today with 90Hz screens, including the latest Google Pixel 4, and the Asus ROG phone is the first 120Hz OLED smartphone to ship in some volume.

This shows that the technology is at least out there and it seems possible that Apple could adopt it in 2020 for the OLED iPhone lineup. Nevertheless, Digitimes has a very mixed record of accuracy when it comes to Apple product predictions.

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About the Author

Benjamin Mayo

Benjamin develops iOS apps professionally and covers Apple news and rumors for 9to5Mac. Listen to Benjamin, every week, on the Happy Hour podcast. Check out his personal blog. Message Benjamin over email or Twitter.