Actually, only the iPhone 12
carries over the screen diagonal of the iPhone 11
(but swaps LCD for OLED display tech), everything else is smaller or larger than what Apple has done so far.
Add a design refresh with flat sides, the 5G connectivity, and the new A14 processor node, as well as major camera improvements, and the "should I upgrade to iPhone 12" question will be on many an iPhone 11 owner's minds. Here are the main iPhone 12 Pro
and Max vs iPhone 11 Pro
/Max differences to help you decide.
iPhone 12 Pro/Max vs iPhone 11 Pro/Max colors
- Pacific Blue vs Midnight Green
- Graphite vs Space Gray
Just like when it released the Watch 6 in blue
for the first time, Apple added a new color option for the iPhone 12 Pro series, and that is Pacific Blue. Unfortunately, it will be replacing Midnight Green which turned out to be a hit among iPhone 11 Pro buyers, but to each their own.
Out with the Midnight Green and Space Grey, in with the Pacific Blue and Graphite
iPhone 12 Pro Max vs iPhone 11 Pro Max display
- 6.7 inches vs 6.5 inches
- Ceramic Shield vs Gorilla Glass
- 2778 x 1284 vs 2688 x 1242 pixels
Hey, the iPhone 5
called from 2012, it wants its flat sides back! On the surface, the iPhone 11 Pro Max and 12 Pro Max differ more than the previous generational jump, what with the 12 series' flat sides, and extra 5G antenna notches.
They also sport display diagonal differences, as Apple is bumping things up a notch to 6.7 inches from 6.5 inches on the 11 Pro Max. Will that also increase the overall size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max in comparison? Thankfully, not that much, as the iPhone 11 Pro Max is already one big device.
iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 11 Pro display
- 6.1 inches vs 5.8 inches
- Tougher Ceramic Shield vs Gorilla Glass
- 2436 x 1125 vs 2532 x 1170 pixels
- 458 PPI vs 460 PPI
The 5.8" iPhone 11 Pro to 6.1" iPhone 12 Pro will not even be the biggest jump in display sizes this year, as we also have the 5.4" iPhone 12 that sports a screen that is half an inch shorter than the 6.1" iPhone 12 Max. Still, the smaller iPhone 12 Pro model gets a significant bump in display size, and is now becoming more akin to a Pro version.
Other than that, the two displays are almost identical (read: excellent) when it comes to brightness, contrast, outdoor visibility, and color presentation, as you can see from our screen benchmark measurements below. The larger display on the 12 Pro doesn't seem to take a bigger toll on battery life, too, so it is the easy choice here.
Display measurements and quality
It also offers Apple's new Ceramic Shield cover glass that proved to be tougher than what's on the iPhone 11 Pro when both phones hit the pavement in drop tests
iPhone 12 Pro/Max vs iPhone 11 Pro/Max specs
- Apple A14 5nm vs Apple A13 7nm chipset
- 128GB vs 64GB base storage
- 5G vs 4G LTE connectivity
- 6GB vs 4GB RAM
- Smaller batteries on the 12 Pro/Max
- 6 vs 4 meters water-resistance depth
All four of Apple's new iPhone 12 2020 models are powered by the A14 Bionic chipset announced with the iPad Air 4. It's the first 5nm chip found inside a smartphone. With 15 billion transistors inside (compared to the 8.5 billion in the A13 Bionic), the A14 Bionic delivers not so much a nice jump in performance but improved energy consumption.
An upgrade of 6GB RAM is deployed on the Pro models, with 4GB on the other variants. All US models work with both high-band mmWave 5G signals and the low to mid-band Sub-6GHz 5G signals, which explains the small elliptical thingy on the side, that's the mmWave antenna.
iPhone 12 Pro/Max vs iPhone 11 Pro/Max camera
- 2.5x vs 2x telephoto optical zoom
- Dual vs Single OIS
- 7P vs 6P lenses
- F/1.6 vs F/1.8 wide angle lens aperture
- Larger sensor and pixels for better low-light shots (12 Pro Max)
- LiDAR camera for AR/VR apps
- Dolby Vision video, Smart HDR 3, Deep Fusion 2, Night Mode Portraits
While the processor speed and memory upgrades are expected for each new iPhone generation, and 5G connectivity is long overdue for Apple's handsets, perhaps the biggest surprise are the 12 Pros' camera kit enhancements compared to the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max generation.
The camera lenses on the 12 Pro/Max now consists of seven elements (7P lenses) vs the 6P on the 11 Pro models. The Pro Max also carries a 5mm larger in length and width sensor, and we would see improvements in low-light photography on the 2020 iPhones with 2 to 3 times faster autofocus.
Image stabilization is also improved as the iPhone 12 Pro/Max have dual OIS, and the Max has Sensor Shift image stabilization for the wide camera, too. This adjusts the sensor to remove the "shakes" instead of the lens. The Pro models add a stabilized telephoto as well, delivering 2.5x optical zoom, plus the LiDAR depth sensor introduced on the latest iPad Pro
models. The LiDAR sensor uses time-of-flight technology to improve AR capabilities and could be used for enhanced Portraits on the iPhone 12 Pro units.
Apple was reportedly testing a 64MP camera for the upcoming series, but engineers were not happy with the outcome so it's your 12MP sensors this year as well, just a larger main one on the Pro Max, and 7P lenses all around. Check out the iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 11 Pro camera samples, quite a bit of a positive development, isn't it?
- Sharper detail and more contrast
- Smart HDR 3 makes for brighter yet without overexposed highlights pictures, especially at night
- Warmer, more saturated colors
iPhone 11 Pro vs iPhone 12 Pro wide, portrait, zoom and selfie camera samples
iPhone 12 Pro Max vs iPhone 11 Pro Max battery life
- 3687mAh vs 3969mAh battery
- 20 hours of video playback
- 12 hours of streaming video
- 80 hours audio playback
Apple is packing the iPhone 12 Pro Max with a 3687mAh battery providing a capacity decrease from the 3969mAh battery inside the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The logic board on the iPhone 12 Pro models is split into two parts and a ribbon cable connects them to help accommodate the larger battery used in each "Pro" unit.
We only have a small bump in display size from the iPhone 11 Pro Max to the iPhone 12 Pro Max, so the smaller battery is offset by the more frugal 5nm A14 processor so Apple cites the same 12 Pro Max battery life compared to the already excellent battery endurance on the iPhone 11 Pro Max.
iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 11 Pro battery life
- 2815mAh vs 3046mAh
- 17 vs 18 hours of video playback
Two of the four new iPhone models in fall 2020 ship without a charger in the box, the cheaper iPhone 12 and 12 Max models, as those would've otherwise probably shipped with Apple's pathetic 5W chargers that nobody wants anyway.
On the other hand, Apple is offering a brand new 20W charger that you will be able to buy separately if you want fast charging, or keep using your good ol' 5W or 18W bricks that are lurking somewhere in your drawer.
On the other hand, the iPhone 12 Pro 5G connectivity hits these otherwise respectable battery life endurance numbers by at least 20% downwards, so you might want to use it sparingly asking yourself what was the reasoning behind the 10% capacity shrinkage in the process.
iPhone 12 Pro/Max vs iPhone 11 Pro/Max prices
- from $999 for the base iPhone 11/12 Pro
- from $1099 for the base iPhone 11/12 Pro Max
Analysts didn't expect Apple to change the $999/$1099 starting price of the iPhone 11 Pro series when the 12 Pro models are released, despite the $100 bump in iPad Air 4's base price
with the new design, and they were right.
Despite the larger display sizes, and the extra 5G connectivity thrown in, Apple didn't use an excuse to plump up the iPhone 12 Pro series pricing
with at least $50 northwards of their correspondent iPhone 11 Pro models, as many expected.
Still, it bumped the base storage to 128GB from the abominable 64GB, would you upgrade because of that, 5G, the slightly better camera set, and the higher durability ratings?