Apple iPhone 12: News, Features, Cameras, and Specs
Apple unveiled the iPhone 12 a little later than usual this year, but it turned out to be well worth the wait. The new device offers a completely new design, a better processor, an improved camera and much more.
There’s more than just one iPhone 12 model, of course. In fact, there are four: the iPhone 12, the iPhone 12 Mini, the iPhone 12 Pro, and the iPhone 12 Pro Max. Each model has its own set of features and characteristics. Not sure exactly how much size varies between all models? Be sure to check out our size comparison article. Here’s what you need to know about the new phones:
iPhone 12 pricing and availability
While Apple has staggered the launch of the iPhone 12, all four models are now widely available. You can get them from your carrier or unlock them at Apple, Amazon, Best Buy, and other retailers. In the few months that the iPhone 12 was available, it is the top-selling 5G phone according to Counterpoint Research, and it did so for the first two weeks after it became available.
Theand is the small and affordable option of installation. The and goes up to $ 949 for the top storage option. We recommend at least 128 GB of storage space.
TheThis gives you 128GB of storage and up to $ 1,299 for the top storage option. At the top the .
If you have a potential for a hit as part of a deal, here is an overview of the different ways to buy them. If you’re not sure whether to get the iPhone 12 or the iPhone 12 Pro, check out our comparison.
Reviews of the iPhone 12 series
After the iPhone 12 models have been out of stock for a while, we had the chance to put them all through their paces. It starts with the base iPhone 12 and its size as a sibling of the iPhone 12 Pro which is the top choice because of its size and pricing. The iPhone 12 is fantastic value for money and offers a great experience for anyone who doesn’t push the envelope. The 12 Pro goes a step further and features a stainless steel frame, more storage for some advanced features, and some additional camera features.
Then you have the Mini and Pro Max booking the group. The 12 Mini is wonderfully small, fits in every hand and still offers all the functions of the iPhone 12 and a comprehensive camera experience. The 12 Pro Max is really massive, with a great screen and extremely long battery life – plus a main camera that outperforms the 12 Pro in low light.
Read our iPhone 12 review
Read our iPhone 12 Mini review
Read our iPhone 12 Pro review
Read our iPhone 12 Pro Max review
How to use iPhone 12
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends
Finally getting your hands on the iPhone 12 and want to make the most of it? We have loads of guides for iPhone 12 and iOS 14 to help you out. For example, here is our guide to iOS 14 tips and tricks to help you get the latest and greatest Apple mobile operating system up and running. By the way, you don’t need an iPhone 12 to get iOS 14 – and here’s how to download it if you don’t have an iPhone 12.
iPhone 12 design and display
The headline for 2020 is that after three generations of advancing the iPhone X design, Apple has finally made a dramatic change to the entire hardware design. The latest design is reminiscent of the iPhone 5 and is the same as the latest iPad Pro and iPad Air.
The sides are now flat, with a matte finish on the iPhone 12 and a glossy finish on the iPhone 12 Pro. There are also sharper edges that blend into the front and back of the glass. The look is completed by smaller bezels across the screen, although the top notch still houses the front-facing camera and Face ID technology. The design is complemented by a number of new colors, in particular an outstanding deep blue variant.
The iPhone 12 and 12 Mini come in black, blue, green, white, and red, while the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max come in black, blue, gold, and white.
The second most enticing part of the iPhone 12 lineup is the screen sizes it offers. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro now have a 6.1-inch display (versus 5.8-inch). However, with the smaller bezels, the phones are not significantly larger overall. New to the product line is the iPhone 12 Mini (yes, that’s the right name) with a 5.4-inch display, which it places right above the iPhone SE in Apple’s product range. For those who want a huge display, there is the iPhone 12 Pro Max with a 6.7-inch display.
The iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max have slightly different surfaces in addition to their different colors. The frame is stainless steel, not aluminum, and the textures of the frame and glass are flipped – the frame is polished to a brilliant shine, while the glass has a matte texture like the iPhone 11 Pro.
There is a huge durability improvement in terms of this display: Ceramic Shield glass. Apple has teamed up with glass maker Corning to develop a new glass cover for the iPhone 12 called Ceramic Shield. This is the strongest display cover currently commercially available. Apple claims that it has 4 times better drop performance, which means that it is much more likely to survive a typical drop without cracking or breaking. We’ll have to wait and see how this affects scratch resistance and other durability measures. Early drop tests seem to suggest that Ceramic Shield is actually very strong, which is promising.
None of the screens, even on the Pro models, have a refresh rate of 120 Hz or what Apple calls “ProMotion” technology. While the screens are gorgeous, it’s still a disappointment in a year when almost every Android phone released has a refresh rate of at least 90Hz – and believe me, that really makes a difference in how the screen looks.
All four iPhone 12 models offer 5G connectivity. This is a first for Apple, but a feature found on most Android phones over $ 500. Apple has chosen to include both the widely used Sub-6 5G and lesser-used mmWave 5G radios in its phones for greater compatibility, especially in the US. Verizon uses mmWave exclusively, while AT&T and T-Mobile are mostly based on Sub-6 and are slowly adding mmWave.
iPhone 12 cameras
The iPhone 12 again only has two cameras, a main lens and an ultrawide lens, but Apple has improved the main camera compared to the iPhone 11. The main camera has a new 7-element lens and a larger f / 1.6 aperture Improvement in low-light photography – Apple claims to have improved low-light capabilities by 27%.
Apple has now turned on night mode for all cameras, so you can take low-light shots with both the rear ultrawide camera and the front-facing selfie camera. This means fewer opportunities to fade out or blow out your subject with a flash. All four iPhone 12 models have an improved OIS (optical image stabilization) for the main camera, which stabilizes at five times the sampling rate and enables better long-term exposures – up to 2 seconds without loss of sharpness.
For the iPhone 12 Pro, the cameras are taken to a new level. First, you get three sensors with an additional telephoto lens at 52mm that offers 2x optical zoom over the main camera. The main camera, like the iPhone 12, has been improved with a f / 1.6 aperture and a new 7-element lens for clearer photos.
Apple is doing even more on the iPhone 12 Pro Max, with improvements to the main and telephoto cameras. The main sensor has a new DSLR-like OIS system called Sensor Shift, which stabilizes the sensor itself, not the lens. With this new sensor system, the performance in poor light conditions is even improved compared to the 12 Pro. The telephoto lens has a longer focal length of 65mm or 2.5 times the main lens, which brings you closer to your subject and reduces the digital zoom required.
With the new A14 Bionic processor, Apple can bring its advanced Deep Fusion camera editing to all four cameras, including the selfie camera, for even better computational photography of difficult scenes, lighting and textures. And as usual, you can edit all of your photos using Apple’s great photo editing technology. Additionally, Apple finally turned on support for ProRAW image capture with iOS 14.3, which makes it easier to edit RAW images on your iPhone.
The return of MagSafe recharge
A big curveball in the iPhone 12 is the resurrection of the MagSafe brand – formerly used for Apple’s laptop chargers that are attached with magnets. The new system integrates strong magnets into the back of the iPhone 12 so you can attach accessories – and no, it’s not just limited to chargers.
MagSafe lets you attach all kinds of accessories – full suitcases, small suitcase attachments like a wallet, car dashboard mounts, and chargers – to the back of the phone with one snap. Apple is also introducing a wireless charging pad with magnets that you can use to toss an iPhone 12 at it and know it will charge every time.
Better still, MagSafe won’t just be available for Apple’s own accessories. Other companies can make MagSafe-compatible accessories, with Belkin being one of the first to introduce new accessories. Given the ruggedness of the accessories market that uses magnets in existing cases, we can expect this to really improve for the iPhone 12 series.