What can we expect from the new iPhone 12?

  • Photo: (c) Apple

    Apple revealed its new iPhone 12 this week, along with the iPhone 12 mini, Pro and Pro Max models, but noted they will not come with a charger and headphones per previous smartphones, as the tech giant pledged to have "net zero climate impact" across its business by 2030.

    These phones are also all the first Apple phone models to be 5G-enabled.

    Some have claimed that the tech titan's climate impact statement is really a disguise, in a way to "squeeze customers" for more money, as they will have to puraches headphones and chargers separately. 

    One LinkedIn user stated not to "buy green, just buy less" after saying noting that the mass production of Apple products are already "fuelling" climate change. 

    What's different about the new iPhone 12?

    Unveiled as part of an online-only event, the Guardian reported that the new iPhones mark some of the biggest changes to Apple’s smartphones since the iPhone X in 2017.

    With the lowest starting price of £699, is the iPhone 12 mini which is one of the smallest and lightest phones to be released this year, weighing only 135g and having a 5.4-inch display. It will be in stores from 13 November.

    The iPhone 12, with a slightly bigger 6.1-inch screen, starts at £799 and will be available to purchase from 23 October.

    Both models have dual rear camera systems made up of 12-megapixel wide and 12-megapixel ultra-wide lenses.

    They also have the same Super Retina XDR OLED screen and support video capture up to 4K resolution.

    The two devices additionally support Apple’s new MagSafe magnetic charging and accessory connection features.

    The 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max are finished with stainless steel bands rather than aluminium and are considered to be the higher range of Apple’s latest products.


    iPhone 12 Pro Max has a slightly better camera than the iPhone 12 Pro, although both support Night mode from every lens, including the selfie camera (Image: APPLE)

    The iPhone 12 Pro will cost from £999 in the UK and the Pro Max will cost £1,099 but will not be available until 13 November.

    The Pro has the same 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display as the 12, but the Pro Max has a much larger 6.7-inch version.

    Both Pro devices have a triple rear camera array of 12-megapixel wide, ultra-wide and telephoto lenses, as well as a LiDAR (light detection and ranging) scanner, which is used for better object detection and room scanning, improve autofocus on subjects in low-light images as well aid augmented reality experiences.

    Another notable feature on all four iPhone 12 handsets is the introduction of Ceramic Shield to the display, a type of hardened glass which Apple says is four times more resistant to damage if the phone is dropped.

    Samsung a rival?

    Samsung’s recently launched Galaxy S20 FE could be a competitive rival to Apple’s new launches, which starts at £699 for the 5G version, but comes with a larger 6.5-inch Super AMOLED screen.

    It similarly promises great pictures even at low-light and can record high-quality video, and all are IP68 water-resistant.

    But where the similarities end, is where the FE has a microSD slot for extra storage and can support up to one terabyte of additional storage on a microSD card.

    The FE also has a triple rear-camera set-up compared to the dual on the two iPhone handsets – the extra lens an eight-megapixel telephoto camera – and a 32-megapixel front-facing “selfie” camera.

    Samsung’s Note 20 Ultra 5G, announced in August, is the closest rival to the iPhone 12 range’s biggest members, but begins at a hefty £1,179.


    (c) Samsung's Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G 

    The Note has a similarly large display to the 12 Pro Max, measuring in at 6.9-inches.

    It has a triple rear camera set-up which includes a 108-megapixel wide-angle camera, is capable of up to 50x Super Resolution Zoom and can also capture video in up to 8K resolution, while the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max capture at 4K.

    The Note 20 Ultra 5G also includes extras such as the built-in S Pen stylus and compatibility with Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which allows users to stream console-quality games to their device.

    Alongside the new iPhones, Apple has launched a new, smaller version of its HomePod smart speaker, powered by the Siri smart assistant, which it hopes will help it better compete with Google and Amazon’s dominant smart speakers and is selling in the UK for around £99 currently, to be bought from 16 November onwards.

    Sources: The Guardian, The Irish news

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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