The iPhone 12 range: Prices, key features and when it’s on sale

14 Oct 20203.75k Views

The iPhone 12. Image: Apple

The iPhone 12 had its long-awaited debut at a virtual event, with Apple revealing four versions of the 5G-compatible phone.

Following a launch that was delayed due to production issues and Covid-19, the iPhone 12 had its big reveal at a virtual Apple event last night (13 October). A total of four versions were launched: the standard iPhone 12, the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max, and a new iPhone 12 Mini.

While all of the phones support 5G speeds, not all support it equally. Apple claimed that all of the models support the most 5G bands on any smartphone, but the two Pro models support the higher frequency of 5G at millimetre wave, allowing for download speeds of up to 4Gbps in city areas – however, this will only be available in the US.

All iPhone 12 models also feature something called a ‘Smart Data’ mode, which extends battery life by assessing 5G needs and balancing data usage, speed and power in real time.

Screen performance

In terms of screen size, the standard iPhone 12 features a 6.1in screen, while the new, smaller Mini clocks in at 5.4in. Apple said that the Mini is the smallest, thinnest and lightest 5G smartphone in the world.

Both feature all-screen Super Retina XDR displays, delivering a 2m-to-one contrast ratio to bolster HD viewing further. Apple also claimed that the phones will be sturdier than previous models with an aerospace-grade aluminium enclosure and a ‘ceramic shield’ front cover.

The Pro screen also clocks in at 6.1in, but the Pro Max is bigger at 6.7in – the largest display ever on an iPhone, with a resolution of almost 3.5m pixels.

Cameras

As expected, the iPhone’s camera has got a major re-work with a new dual-camera system. Combined with Apple’s new A14 Bionic processor, the phones feature an ultra-wide camera and a new wide camera with a faster aperture, providing 27pc more light for shots.

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The Pro Max model takes it even further with a 47pc larger sensor for an 87pc improvement in low-light conditions. A lidar scanner has also been included on Pro models to support better augmented reality experiences.

The iPhone 12 features the first camera to shoot HDR video with Dolby Vision and is the first to enable a Dolby Vision experience to capture, edit and share cinema-grade videos natively on the phone.

Apple has also introduced wireless charging for the new iPhone range with the MagSafe Charger and MagSafe Duo Charger. Taking the existing MagSafe concept for MacBook chargers, the new feature allows the phone to snap magnetically on to the centre of a wireless charging pad, while still accommodating existing Qi-enabled devices.

The back of a new iPhone 12 showing its dual-camera system.

The new dual-camera system on iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini. Image: Apple

Prices

The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini have three storage options available – 64GB, 128GB and 256GB – with a starting price of €913.85 for the standard version and €815.50 for the Mini.

Meanwhile, the Pro and Pro Max models offer more storage – 128GB, 256GB and 512GB – and will cost at least €1,159.80 and €1,258.20, respectively.

Customers in Australia, China, Germany, Japan, the UK, the US and more than 30 other countries and regions will be able to pre-order the iPhone 12 and the Pro model from 16 October, with availability beginning 23 October. The iPhone 12 Mini and the Pro Max will be available for pre-order beginning on 6 November and will be available from 13 November.

If you do decide to take the plunge on a new iPhone, don’t expect to find a charger or EarPods in the box, as Apple has confirmed that it will just include a USB-C cable. This, the company said, will allow it to reduce carbon emissions by 2m metric tonnes annually and produce smaller packing. Such a change was first rumoured earlier this year.

“This is a huge leap for iPhone, bringing the best 5G experience in the market and delivering our most advanced technologies to users who want the absolute most from their iPhone,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice-president of worldwide marketing.

Colm Gorey is a senior journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com