The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are merely extraordinary. Our full assessment

Patrick Holland/CNET

The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are right here and mark the start of a brand new technology of iPhone. Support for 5G, a brand new {hardware} design and digicam enhancements are a major step away from the iPhone X technology of units. That is nothing new. Apple did one thing comparable in 2010 with the iPhone 4 and in 2014 when it launched the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

There’s one big difference with the iPhone 12 generation, although. It is the primary time there are four new iPhones at once: the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12 Professional and iPhone 12 Professional Max. If you wish to go small and reap the advantages of a cheaper price there’s the Mini. If you’d like the largest iPhone with the most recent in iPhone cameras, get the Professional Max. However that leaves the 12 and 12 Professional that are comparable (like basically-the-same-phone comparable). That is not essentially a nasty factor.


  • Premium match and end
  • Improbable autofocus for pictures and movies
  • Stable construct high quality
  • Quickest telephone we have ever examined

Do not Like

  • iPhone 12 provides a lot of the similar options, design and construct for much less cash

The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are the identical measurement. They each have the identical design, the identical show, the identical insanely quick A14 Bionic chip, the identical 5G support, the identical selfie, large and ultrawide cameras. Heck, they each are available blue. (Technically, the 12 Professional is Pacific blue.) It is a departure from the bottom and professional fashions from final yr. The $699 iPhone 11 and $999 iPhone 11 Professional had been comparable however had sufficient variations to differentiate themselves from one another.

The $829 iPhone 12 (or $799 in case you activate it on a provider while you purchase it) is $130 greater than the iPhone 11 when it was launched. An iPhone 12 with 128GB of storage (the identical because the baseline 12 Professional) prices $879 (sans provider low cost) which is just $120 lower than the $999 iPhone 12 Professional. It is best to consider the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional as “higher” and “greatest” variations of the identical telephone.

Costs begin within the UK at £799 for the iPhone 12 and £999 for the 12 Professional. In Australia they begin at AU$1,349 for the 12 and AU$1,699 for the 12 Professional. See the chart on the backside for a full pricing breakdown.

iPhone 12 vs. 12 Professional vs. iPhone 11

iPhone 12 iPhone 12 Professional iPhone 11
Price off-contract (USD) $829 (64GB), $879 (128GB), $979 (256GB) $999 (128GB), $1,099 (256GB), $1,299 (512GB) $599 (64GB), $649 (128GB), $749 (256GB)
Digital camera 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultrawide) 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultrawide), 12-megapixel (telephoto) 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultrawide)
Storage 64GB, 128GB, 256GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 64GB, 128GB, 256GB

Now there are various individuals who will simply get the iPhone 12 as a result of it would not price a thousand {dollars} and it is an awesome telephone. Which it’s. And there are various individuals who will get the iPhone 12 Professional as a result of it’s extra premium. Which it’s. Both means, you are getting an incredible telephone with the most effective total digicam system you will discover.

Throughout my time with each telephones, I discovered myself choosing the 12 Professional extra. Not as a result of it had a telephoto digicam or lidar, which the 12 lacks: I most popular the matte textured again, the shiny stainless-steel band across the sides and the truth that the 12 Professional, regardless of weighing practically an oz (25 grams) extra, felt stable and premium in my hand.

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Our in-depth assessment of the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional


The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional have the identical 5G help

It is good that both the 12 and 12 Pro can connect to sub-6 and mmWave 5G here in the US. One telephone would not have higher 5G help than the opposite. They’re each the identical.

I examined these telephones in Greenville, South Carolina on each T-Cellular’s 5G community and Verizon’s Nationwide 5G (the non-mmWave model with out the bonkers speeds). I used to be impressed with the protection each carriers provided, however not all the time with the consistency of 5G speeds. Utilizing the app SpeedTest, the iPhone 12 on T-Cellular recorded obtain speeds between 10.Four and 14.9 megabits per second, whereas the iPhone 12 Professional on Verizon clocked in between 97.9 and 104Mbps for downloads.

iPhone 12 Pro

The iPhone 12 Professional and iPhone 12 each provide the identical help for 5G.

Patrick Holland/CNET

Pace assessments apart, there isn’t a killer app that can show off how 5G is pushing things forward. Proper now, you will see loads of opinions displaying you SpeedTest scores and how briskly you’ll be able to obtain season Three of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon. That mentioned, most iPhone house owners are likely to hold their telephones for years. Even in case you do not expertise quick 5G speeds now, at the least your telephone will be capable of deal with them once they arrive down the road.

Connecting to 5G can tax your telephone’s battery life. Apple carried out a intelligent software program characteristic referred to as Sensible Knowledge mode, which balances knowledge wants, pace and energy. Sensible Knowledge appears to be like at quite a lot of components to find out whether or not you’ll want to use 5G. In the event you do not, your iPhone will change to a 4G connection. Sensible Knowledge may even change between completely different bands of 5G. You may override Sensible Knowledge and choose to have 5G connectivity on a regular basis. 

One cool factor about 5G on the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional was that it let me make HD FaceTime calls over mobile. Extra 5G issues like that, please. 

The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional have an iPhone 5 design

One of many first issues I seen in regards to the iPhone 12 is its “slabular” magnificence. Apple’s thought of premium differs from the flash and spectacle we see in flagship Android telephones. Physique colours do not seem to morph from one to a different relying on the sunshine. The display screen would not wrap across the edges. Actually, the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional do not have curved edges in any respect.

As a substitute, a straight-edged polished stainless-steel band defines the iPhone 12 Professional (it is matte aluminum on the 12), a lot in the best way it did on the iPhone 5, 5S and SE, simply with out the chamfered edges. The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional have a daring, hanging look with none frills. The construct and end on the 12 Professional are extraordinary.


The squared-off edges of the iPhone 5 are again.

Patrick Holland/CNET

The iPhone 12 can also be outlined by a shocking OLED panel, which Apples calls a Tremendous XDR show. Gone is the LCD discovered on the iPhone XR and 11. Apart from the distinction and determination, the squared-off sides appear to push the show up and ahead. When the telephone is on its again, it is as if the remainder of the telephone is holding up the show whereas making an attempt to not be seen.

Each telephone screens are lined with a ceramic defend, a brand new materials that begins off as glass and is infused with nano-ceramic crystals. (After the infusion, it is now not thought-about glass.) Apple claims it provides 4 occasions the safety when dropped. I am unsure precisely how that quantity was calculated by Apple, however I sit up for my colleagues placing the 12 and 12 Professional by means of a sequence of drop assessments. The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are each rated IP68 for water- and dust-resistance and might stand up to being submerged in water to a depth of 6 meters for 30 minutes. Within the time I had the telephones, each dealt with spills, gentle rain and minimal submerging in water simply superb.

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We unbox the iPhone 12, 12 Professional and a bunch of MagSafe…


iPhone 12 and 12 Professional seize glorious pictures and movies

The cameras acquired {hardware}, software program and processing upgrades. Whereas different telephones may need a standout digicam characteristic (just like the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s 100x Space Zoom) that these iPhones lack, the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional can seize glorious pictures and video and ship persistently implausible photographs. This is a pattern taken in a spread of various environments and lighting.


The iPhone 12 Professional nails the feel of the clouds and the highlights on the left aspect of the steeple.

Patrick Holland/CNET


This scene is a computational pictures impediment course. There’s transferring water, a cloudy sky, brick patterns within the background and pink and pink flowers. And the iPhone 12 handles all of it like a champ.

Patrick Holland/CNET


The quantity of element that the iPhone 12 Professional was capable of seize on this photograph is spectacular.

Patrick Holland/CNET


The iPhone 12 was capable of seize the feel of the sunshine coloured bricks and the shine of the black signal.

Patrick Holland/CNET


This scene actually exhibits off the dynamic vary of the iPhone 12.

Patrick Holland/CNET

The iPhone 12 has the very same cameras because the iPhone 12 Professional, apart from the telephoto digicam and lidar. However these telephones aren’t simply depending on {hardware} to take good pictures and movies. Apple’s new A14 Bionic chip, together with software program and machine studying, provides enhancements to the whole lot.

For instance, the 12 and 12 Professional have the identical {hardware} for his or her ultrawide-angle digicam as final yr’s 11 and 11 Professional. However the 12 and 12 Professional have software program to appropriate the lens distortion. Have a look under at these ultrawide-angle pictures of a brick wall. within the iPhone 11 photograph, discover how the corners of the brick wall seem like they’re bending.


Timed selfie taken with the rear ultrawide-angle digicam on the iPhone 12. Getting my Beastie Boys pose on.

Patrick Holland/CNET


Apple added software program to scale back the distortion on the ultrawide-angle digicam. Fortunate the dramatic perspective stays unchanged on this photograph taken with the iPhone 12.

Patrick Holland/CNET

iPhone 12

The ultrawide-angle digicam on the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional now has Night time Mode help.

Patrick Holland/CNET

The principle wide-angle digicam on each telephones has a quicker lens that allows extra gentle. The brand new lens, mixed with Sensible HDR 3, yields actually wonderful pictures with correct colours and stable dynamic vary. Night time Mode is now on the ultrawide and selfie cameras. I am shocked at how good some Night time Mode pictures got here out, even the selfie portraits I took! The telephoto digicam on the 12 Professional is a big step up in zoom in comparison with the iPhone 12. However there are a selection of telephones that provide for much longer zooms with higher outcomes.


With out loads of gentle, the iPhone 12 Professional was capable of render this scene fantastically.

Patrick Holland/CNET


Regardless of being downtown with a number of gentle, the iPhone 12 Professional was even capable of finding some stars within the sky.

Patrick Holland/CNET

When it comes to video, particularly on the iPhone 12 Professional, the main focus is implausible and was capable of monitor me even after I was taking pictures at night time. And that is due to the lidar sensor. Actually, a few of the clips in my assessment video had been shot on the iPhone 12 Professional.

iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are the quickest telephones

The cameras aren’t the one factor that the A14 Bionic chip improves. It is quick, nevertheless it’s arduous to see the elevated pace over the A13 chip, which continues to be peppy. The A14 chip is as a lot about energy now as it’s about future-proofing your telephone so it could possibly deal with iOS 17 in a number of years.

In efficiency benchmark assessments, the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional recorded the very best scores of any telephones we have ever examined. See the outcomes under.

3DMark Slingshot Limitless


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

Geekbench v.5.Zero single-core


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

Geekbench v.5.Zero multicore


Longer bars point out higher efficiency

When it comes to battery life, I usually received by means of a day and the subsequent morning OK. I used to be capable of run a single battery take a look at with looped video enjoying at half brightness in airplane mode. The iPhone 12 Professional lasted 15 hours, 56 minutes and the iPhone 12 lasted 17 hours, 14 minutes. I would like extra time to guage the battery life on the 12 and 12 Professional as soon as I am accomplished reviewing the telephones and we’ve extra battery assessments to run, so examine again to this text for updates.

The telephone comes with a USB-C to Lightning cable, which may provide tremendous quick speeds. Apple no longer includes a pair of wired earbuds within the field or a power adapter, the concept being to reduce hazardous digital waste. It is possible this would possibly not be an issue for you as most individuals will have already got a pair of earbuds and a wall charger to make use of.

However this is the place that does not essentially add up: Since 2012, all iPhones have include a 5-watt charger USB-An influence adapter, which is not suitable with the included USB-C cable. Sure, if you have already got an previous Lightning cable you possibly can use that, or you possibly can purchase a USB-C energy adapter. Or you possibly can check out Apple’s new MagSafe wi-fi charging system, however the MagSafe charger (and not using a wall charger) is $39.

MagSafe makes use of magnets contained in the telephone and charger to nestle them right into a place that’s the best for charging. I actually loved utilizing MagSafe. The sound the telephone and charger make once they join is past satisfying. There’s even an animation that pops up on display screen displaying that the whole lot is correctly linked. I attempted out some MagSafe instances, which work nicely and permit for wi-fi charging by means of the case with out shedding energy.

iPhone 12

From left to proper: MagSafe charger, MagSafe clear case on an iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Professional and MagSafe removable pockets.

Patrick Holland/CNET

The magnets may also connect with noncharging equipment like a removable pockets, which you need to use with or and not using a MagSafe telephone case. This little enterprise card-sized pockets gained me over. I am excited to see what Apple and third-party corporations use MagSafe for.

The iPhone 12 and 12 Professional are wonderful telephones, however we solely have half the image proper now. There’s additionally the iPhone 12 Mini (which I am significantly enthusiastic about, given its measurement and value) and the iPhone 12 Professional Max, which maxes out the dimensions of the telephone’s show and provides digicam enhancements that not one of the different iPhones 12 have. However that is simply what we all know primarily based on the specs. We’ll have to attend till November to see how they work out in actuality.

iPhone 12 vs. 12 Professional vs. Mini vs. 12 Professional Max

Apple iPhone 12 Apple iPhone 12 Mini Apple iPhone 12 Professional Apple iPhone 12 Professional Max
Show measurement, decision 6.1-inch OLED; 2,532×1,170 pixels 5.4-inch OLED; 2,340×1,080 pixels 6.1-inch OLED; 2,532×1,170 pixels 6.7-inch OLED; 2,778×1,284 pixels
Pixel density 460ppi 476ppi 460ppi 458ppi
Dimensions (inches) 5.78×2.82×0.29 inches 5.18×2.53×0.29 inches 5.78×2.82×0.29 inches 6.33×3.07×0.29 inches
Dimensions (millimeters) 146.7×71.5×7.4mm 131.5×64.2×7.4mm 146.7×71.5×7.4mm 160.8×78.1×7.4mm
Weight (ounces, grams) 5.78 oz.; 164g 4.76 oz.; 135g 6.66 oz.; 189g 8.03 oz.; 228g
Cellular software program iOS 14 iOS 14 iOS 14 iOS 14
Digital camera 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide) 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide) 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), 12-megapixel (telephoto) 12-megapixel (large), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), 12-megapixel (telephoto)
Entrance-facing digicam 12-megapixel 12-megapixel 12-megapixel 12-megapixel
Video seize 4K 4K 4K 4K
Processor Apple A14 Bionic Apple A14 Bionic Apple A14 Bionic Apple A14 Bionic
Storage 64GB, 128GB, 256GB 64GB, 128GB, 256GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
RAM Undisclosed Undisclosed Undisclosed Undisclosed
Expandable storage No No No No
Battery Undisclosed; Apple lists 15 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 15 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 17 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 17 hours of video playback
Fingerprint sensor No (Face ID) No (Face ID) No (Face ID) No (Face ID)
Connector Lightning Lightning Lightning Lightning
Headphone jack No No No No
Particular options 5G enabled; MagSafe; water-proof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM) 5G enabled; MagSafe; water-proof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM) Lidar scanner; 5G enabled; MagSafe; water-proof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM) Lidar scanner; 5G enabled; MagSafe; water-proof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM)
Price off-contract (USD) $829 (64GB), $879 (128GB), $979 (256GB) $729 (64GB), $779 (128GB), $879 (256GB) $999 (128GB), $1,099 (256GB), $1,299 (512GB) $1,099 (128GB), $1,199 (256GB), $1,399 (512GB)
Price (GBP) £799 (64GB), £849 (128GB), £949 (256GB) £699 (64GB), £749 (128GB), £849 (256GB) £999 (128GB), £1,099 (256GB), £1,299 (512GB) £1,099 (128GB), £1,199 (256GB), £1,399 (512GB)
Price (AUD) AU$1,349 (64GB), AU$1,429 (128GB), AU$1,599 (256GB) AU$1,199 (64GB), AU$1,279 (128GB), AU$1,449 (256GB) AU$1,699 (128GB), AU$1,869 (256GB), AU$2,219 (512GB) AU$1,849 (128GB), AU$2,019 (256GB), AU$2,369 (512GB)

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Anil Kumar

Anil Kumar Gadgets writes for Review Tech smartphones, wearables, headphones and speakers based in Delhi for 360 Tech News. Anil Gadgets is a reviewer for 360 Tech News and has written in detail about smartphones, software updates and upcoming devices.

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