The iPhone 12 is like an album of Apple’s biggest iPhone hits. It combines the well-regarded design aesthetic of the iPhone 5, the promised generational leap in wi-fi know-how of the iPhone 3G, and the dense digicam system and enormous OLED display of extra fashionable flagships.

The iPhone 12 wraps up so many engaging options, the truth is, that it makes it arduous to suggest the iPhone 12 Professional to any however a really small variety of individuals. There’s simply not a lot to distinguish them, and that’s an excellent factor. The cheaper iPhone 12 is greater than adequate for almost anybody.

That’s the place issues stand at present, anyway. However it can all change once more in a couple of weeks. The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are the center youngsters between the 2 fashions that can later generate probably the most buzz, I feel—the iPhone 12 mini and the iPhone 12 Professional Max.

I say that as a result of, in my expertise, most individuals fall into certainly one of two camps: they both need the biggest telephone display they’ll get their (two) fingers on (the 12 Professional Max), or they need their telephones to be as small and one-hand-friendly as attainable (the 12 mini).

Sadly, we don’t but have these telephones in hand to evaluation. However other than display dimension variations and a few digicam enhancements on the 12 Professional Max, they gained’t differ a lot from the 2 6.1-inch telephones we’re reviewing at present.

Desk of Contents


Specs at a look: Apple iPhone 12 and 12 Professional
Display screen 2532×1170 6.1-inch (420PPI) OLED touchscreen
OS iOS 14.1
CPU Apple A14 Bionic
RAM 4GB for iPhone 12; 6GB for iPhone 12 Professional
GPU Apple-made A14 Bionic GPU
Storage 64, 128, or 256GB for iPhone 12; 128, 256, or 512GB for iPhone 12 Professional
Networking Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5, 5G
Ports Lightning
Digital camera Two 12MP rear cameras (wide-angle, ultra-wide-angle) for iPhone 12; three 12MP rear cameras (wide-angle, ultra-wide-angle, telephoto) for iPhone 12 Professional; 7MP entrance digicam for each; Dolby Imaginative and prescient HDR 4K video seize
Dimension 5.78×2.82×0.29-inches (146.7×71.5×7.4mm)
Weight 5.78oz (165g) for iPhone 12; 6.66oz (189g) for iPhone 12 Professional
Beginning worth $699 for iPhone 12; $999 for iPhone 12 Professional
Different perks MagSafe, Face ID

All the brand new iPhones sport Apple’s A14 system-on-a-chip, which features a CPU, a GPU, the Neural Engine, and extra.

Manufactured on a 5nm course of—seemingly the identical that shall be used for upcoming Apple Silicon Macs—the A14 is an iterative step ahead when it comes to CPU and GPU speeds, nevertheless it’s a giant leap (Apple says) for the Neural Engine, which handles most machine studying processing. (Some is finished on the CPU or GPU, relying on the duty.)

Apple has doubled the cores within the Neural Engine from eight to 16, and the corporate claims a 70-percent enhance in efficiency as such.

The iPhone 12 claims as much as 17 hours of battery life for native video playback and simply 11 hours for streaming video for each gadgets. That’s roughly corresponding to different latest high-end iPhones, nevertheless it’s only a bit beneath what the iPhone 11 promised.


So far as ports go, there’s nonetheless only one, and it’s nonetheless Apple’s proprietary Lightning connector—whilst nearly everybody else within the trade has adopted USB-C, together with Apple’s personal Mac and iPad groups.

Mixed with the introduction of MagSafe, Apple’s doggedness in sticking with Lightning for yet one more yr makes me suppose that the corporate’s subsequent play is to forgo the charging cable totally. In the event that they had been going to change to USB-C, it seems like this could have been the design to take action. The actual fact it wasn’t means that Apple might attempt to skip USB-C and go straight to totally wi-fi. If that occurs, there’ll clearly be some huge professionals and large cons.

We’ll cross that bridge when and if we come to it. For now, the intense facet is that in the event you’re coming from a earlier iPhone mannequin, you do not have to exchange your current wired equipment and charging cables.


Transferring on to the shows, each the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional have 6.1-inch, 2,532 x 1,170-pixel OLED screens. Each help HDR (although like different latest iPhones, the panels are 8-bit, not the 10-bit usually related to HDR panels) and have a most HDR brightness of 1,200 cd/m2. They’re not precisely the identical, although, as a result of the utmost typical brightness (when not viewing HDR content material) for the iPhone 12 is 625 cd/m2. It’s 800 for the iPhone 12 Professional.

The 12’s show is a gigantic step up over the lower-resolution, LCD display of the iPhone 11. However though I’m an obsessive videophile and a show tech geek, I couldn’t see a major distinction anecdotally between the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Professional screens in regular utilization.

I all however sneered with derision eventually yr’s iPhone 11 display in my evaluation when evaluating it to the 11 Professional, whilst I acknowledged most individuals gained’t care a lot. If I don’t see a major distinction this time round, I think about few will.

A lot noise shall be made about the truth that the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional shouldn’t have 120Hz screens, whereas many Android rivals do, in some kind or one other (albeit usually with some huge compromises). A 120Hz show—which refreshes twice as quick because the 60Hz shows which have been commonplace for years—feels a bit nicer when scrolling via web sites and the like, nevertheless it’s a delicate distinction. When you’re used to 60Hz, you gained’t miss it. Within the unlikely occasion you’re already used to 120Hz, you’ll in all probability regulate, nevertheless it’s a compromise.

Typically, Android telephones operating in 120Hz mode take a major hit to battery life; the display is often the #1 battery drainer, and it’s working twice as arduous on this mode, in any case. My guess is that Apple skipped 120Hz as a result of it’s already hitting battery life fairly arduous with 5G, and it deemed 5G a better precedence. The mixture of 5G and a 120Hz show might need been an excessive amount of to bear without delay for the iPhone’s battery life, in Apple’s estimation.

So whereas 120Hz would have been good, nobody actually wants it. Nonetheless, it might have been cool.

That apart, Apple’s shows are top-notch. DisplayMate’s deep dives give them the very best marks, and whereas they’re overwhelmed in some particular measures by Samsung’s greatest, they’ve a dedication to paint accuracy and tuning that Samsung’s don’t. It’s a matter of choice, nevertheless it suffices to say that the iPhone 12’s show is nearly as good because it will get.


When you’re searching for a differentiator between these two gadgets, look no additional than the storage choices. The iPhone 12 is available in 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB configurations. For the 12 Professional, it’s 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB.

64GB is just not going to be sufficient for lots of people, whereas 128GB or 256GB shall be optimum for most individuals. However for a couple of choose customers, even 256GB gained’t be sufficient—these of us should take into account splurging for the Professional. Aside from a couple of extra digicam options, that is the perfect purpose I can consider to spend additional for the Professional.


Talking of cameras: the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Professional share lots of the similar specs. The distinction, primarily, is the Professional’s inclusion of a 3rd, telephoto lens—and its capacity to seize HDR video at 60 frames per second (the iPhone 12 is proscribed to 30fps when HDR is enabled).

On each telephones, you’ve received a 12MP wide-angle lens (ƒ/1.6 aperture, 7-element) and a 12MP ultra-wide angle (ƒ/2.4, 5-element). The latter is to be used circumstances like photographing teams of associates in tight areas, because it allows 2x optical zoom out. The iPhone 12 Professional provides that 12MP telephoto lens (ƒ/2.0 aperture, 6-element) to allow 2x optical zoom in.

The 12 Professional additionally provides a lidar scanner, which can be utilized each for extra reasonable augmented actuality experiences and to enhance some options just like the pace of autofocus in darkish environs.

As for video seize, each telephones help HDR video in Dolby Imaginative and prescient—Apple claims these are the primary smartphones to take action—however as famous above, the iPhone 12 Professional can do that at 60fps whereas the iPhone 12 is proscribed to 30fps.

In any other case, the video seize options are fairly comparable. Each can shoot 4K video at 24fps, 30fps, or 60fps, and 1080p at 30 or 60fps. They’ll additionally seize sluggish movement video at 1080p and both 120fps or 240fps.

Lastly, each telephones embrace a front-facing digicam at 12MP (ƒ/2.2 aperture), in addition to the TrueDepth sensor array present in flagship telephones for the reason that iPhone X, which facilitates the telephones’ face recognition options.

We’ll transfer past the specs and get extra into the cameras and their differentiating options within the cameras part of the evaluation.


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