Apple’s iPhone 12 is now one of the highest-rated phones CNET has ever reviewed. If you’re thinking about an upgrade from the previous year’s iPhone 11 to the base iPhone 12 model (or one of the other three models available), you may be wondering: What exactly is the difference between the two phones? And is it worth it to spend $799 on an iPhone 12 right now If you don’t have either phone, the iPhone 11 now starts at $599 and that $200 gap might be all you need to hear?
The iPhone 12 received one of the highest review ratings ever. It features the powerful and fast A14 Bionic processor, dual rear cameras, 5G and a “MagSafe” feature that allows it to connect to other mobile accessories magnetically.
The iPhone 11 is a great phone value for the price, which recently dropped to $599. The iPhone 11 has an A13 processor and a great camera setup. It also survived CNET‘s drop and water tests and earned a CNET Editors’ Choice Award.
Basically, the base 12th version and 11th are the same sizes. However, the iPhone 12 weighs about one ounce less than the 11.
The 12th version comes in five colours: deep blue, minty green, red, white and black. The iPhone 11 comes in six colours: black, white, purple, green, yellow and Product Red.
There are some key differences, however, when it comes to each phone’s design. Here’s how the iPhone 12 compares to 11 in terms of screen size, battery, cameras and even more…
MODELS AND SIZES
The entry-level of the 12th version is the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 mini, which represents a new size for Apple. There’s also a 6.1-inch iPhone 12, sized similarly to the regular iPhone 11.
As you step up to the Pro phones, the iPhone 12 Pro also comes in two sizes: 6.1 inches for the iPhone 12 Pro and 6.7 inches for the it’s12 Pro Max. The iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max are 5.8 inches and 6.7 inches, respectively. Overall, Apple’s new 12th version lineup offers more choice than the iPhone 11 roster.
Apples phone 12 mini is the cheapest of the line, starting at $699. The regular 12th version costs $799. Both come with 64GB of storage standard; 128GB costs an extra $50, while 256GB costs an additional $150.
The iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max start with 128GB of storage and cost exactly what the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max do: $999 for the smaller model and $1,099 for the larger one.
In keeping with tradition, Apple is retiring the 11 Pro range while preserving the standard iPhone 11 on the market. That device used to cost $699; it now starts at $599.
iPhone: BATTERY LIFE
Apple isn’t known for stuffing the biggest batteries possible inside its phones. The 11th version packed a 3,100 mAh battery, while the it’s11 Pro featured a 3,046 mAh battery. The iPhone 11 Pro Max stepped that up to a 3,969 mAh battery.
On our battery testing, the 11th version (11 hours and 16 minutes) and the 11 Pro Max (11:54) both provided enough endurance to land on our best phone battery life list.
The 12th version and 12 Pro, on the other hand, both come with a 2,815 mAh battery.
According to Apple the 12th version has a similar battery life to the iPhone 11, despite the smaller battery.
CAMERAS AND LIDAR SCANNER
The 12th version and 11 Pro proved to be among the best camera phones on the market, thanks to their great Night Mode and next-generation Smart HDR. The 11th version featured a standard wide and ultra-wide lens, while the 11 Pro series added a telephoto zoom.
For the 12th version, the regular 5.4-inch iPhone 12 and 6.1-inch iPhone 12 offer two lenses once more, and the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max have three cameras plus a new LiDAR scanner.
This advanced time-of-flight sensor, which is already on the iPad Pro 2020, assists with autofocus and subject detection in video recording and when using the phone’s cameras in Night Mode.
As for the other cameras, Apple is utilizing a wider ƒ/1.6 aperture for the primary camera in every iPhone 12, as well as a new seven-element lens design that is said to markedly increase the quality of photos, particularly in medium- and low-light scenarios. The 12th version Pro Max in particular sports a larger image sensor with Sensor-Shift image stabilization technology, and its telephoto lens achieves 2.5x optical zoom. That’s a step up from the 2x zoom of the iPhone 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max and 12 Pro models.
More about the camera…
The 12th version range can employ Night Mode and Portrait Mode on every single one of the phones’ cameras, across the front and back. And all devices in the family can achieve 10-bit HDR video recording with Dolby Vision (though the 12th version Pro and Pro Max can do this at 60 frames per second, as opposed to 30 fps for the regular iPhone 12).
The 12th version Pro and Pro Max also have a feature called “ProRAW”. While typical RAW images don’t work on smartphones because of all the image processing phones have to do. Apple’s system blends the two together – shooting high quality, uncompressed RAW files with some image processing on top.
It doesn’t stop you from doing some post-production editing as you would an ordinary RAW file. Still, it takes care of some of the more troublesome parts before you take a crack at it.
iPhone: 5G VS 4G
While the iPhone 11 series was strictly 4G only, all four of the 12th version models employ 5G connectivity. And that’s not only for the nationwide, sub-6GHz 5G networks. 5G also grants you exceptionally fast data speed in urban areas, up to 3.5Gbps in optimal conditions, according to Apple.
Nationwide 5G isn’t performing as well as most carriers would probably like, as even under the best circumstances, speeds have either narrowly outpaced or well underperformed the fastest LTE signals. It also proved to be a serious power drain, 5G takes an extra two hours off the battery life.
At this very moment, then, 5G isn’t realizing its potential. But in a year to two years’ time, you’ll probably wish you had a good phone that could take advantage of it.
The 12th version upgrades are plenty, like 5G. A faster A14 Bionic processor to new display sizes for both the 12 and 12 Pro Max. And, if you’re really into photography, you’ll enjoy the better low-light performance. The regular iPhone 12 and faster auto-focus on the 12 Pro models.
Are all of these differences being enough to get shoppers excited? It certainly doesn’t hurt that Apple’s made its new iPhones thinner and sleeker, despite all those additions. The 11th version remains a good value if you’re on a tighter budget. Or you may also check out the Top 10 Mobile Phone Brands In The World (2021) that you can afford.