Apple Debuts iPhone 12 with 5G Connectivity — Here's Everything You Need to Know
The newest editions of Apple's iPhone made their first appearances on Tuesday morning during the company's virtual end-of-the-year event — and for some longtime iPhone users, it may feel like a blast to the past.
Hosted by CEO Tim Cook, the event saw the debuts of four iPhone 12 devices, which — at first glance — look similar to last year's models. But when it comes to appearance, the primary change to the iPhone's body is it now has flat edges instead of curved. This is a return to the same style as the iPhone 5, released eight years ago, which many on Twitter were quick to point out (even if no one was complaining).
Apple announced that every new device in their smartphone lineup — the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone Pro and iPhone Pro Max — will have 5G capability.
That means users will be able to download apps faster and stream content more smoothly when on the go and not connected to WiFi. While there might not be the monumental change in appearance that some may have wanted this year, Cook emphasized the company focused on making the devices faster.
"Every decade there’s a new generation of technology that provides a step change in what we can do with our iPhones," Cook said during the event. "This is a huge moment for all of us."
Starting at $799, the iPhone 12 comes in five colors — black, white, red, green and blue. It will be up for preorder starting this Friday and will be released on Oct. 23.
Another change from last year's model is that the iPhone 12 will come with a 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR display, which allows for more vibrant colors and deeper blacks. The company also said its new Ceramic Shield front cover is more durable compared to the glass of the iPhone 11 and improves on the device's water resistance (though it still isn't "waterproof").
As with every year, the iPhone's photography options have once again been upgraded, and the iPhone 12 comes with a 12-megapixel f/1.6 main camera and a 12MP ultrawide.
But one of the biggest additions to the iPhones is MagSafe, which uses a magnet in the back of the device to hold cases and other accessories. It also allows iPhone to better connect to wireless chargers and could be a signal that Apple is looking to move away from the traditional lightning port and USB-C charging options.
This is reinforced by the company announcing it is no longer offering a charging brick with new devices, so don't lose the ones you've collected over the years.
iPhone 12 Mini
Coming with the same features as the 6.1-inch iPhone 12, the iPhone 12 Mini has a 5.4-inch screen that will be a welcome change to customers who felt the latest editions were too large for their hands. The iPhone 12 Mini will be available for $699.
iPhone 12 Pro and the iPhone 12 Pro Max
The most powerful of the bunch, the iPhone 12 Pro and the larger iPhone 12 Pro Max both come with a LiDar sensor, which can be used for augmented reality (AR). Augmented reality lets users place 3D objects into real-world environments through the iPhone's screen. This can be used for something as simple as gaming, to placing models of furniture in a room to see where things will fit.
Cameras are also upgraded in both of the iPhone's pro models, with improved lowlight performance in both models and larger sensors in the Pro Max. This will allow for better night time photography, according to Apple.
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Both the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 and the 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max will come in four stainless steel finishes, including graphite, silver, gold and pacific blue, the company said. Pre-orders for iPhone 12 Pro start on Friday with a release date of Oct. 23. iPhone 12 Pro Max will be available for preorder on Nov. 6 and will be released a week later on Nov. 13. They will start at $999 and $1,099, respectively.
Apple also debuted a new version of its smart speaker, the HomePod Mini. Priced at $99, the miniature version of the HomePod is powered by the company's Siri voice assistance and can be ordered Nov. 6 with availability landing the week of Nov. 16.