Updated: Mar 29
Apple finally launched the much-awaited iPhone 12 in its “Hi, Speed” October 13 event. Customers can choose from four models of the iPhone 12: the iPhone 12, the iPhone 12 Pro, the iPhone 12 Pro Max and the iPhone 12 mini. Apart from launching the latest version of its flagship product, Apple also announced a smaller version of its smart speaker, which will be called the HomePod mini, and a new line of magnet-based accessories for the iPhone called MagSafe.
Every variant of the iPhone 12 has the brand new A14 bionic chip, which is the first smartphone chip to be made on a 5 nanometer process for improving performance and efficiency. According to Apple, the 6-core CPU and the 4-core GPU in its A14 chip are about fifty percent faster than other smartphone chips. The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max also have the LiDAR scanner for more realistic Augmented Reality (AR).
Apart from a new, robust processing chip, the iPhone 12 series supports the 5G network. Though it hasn’t yet been rolled out in India, 5G has been set up in various countries like South Korea, the United Kingdom, China and the United States. So, even though Indian customers might not consider 5G as a factor while buying the iPhone 12, customers in these countries most certainly will.This might also mean that the iPhone 12 has unexpectedly high sales as Apple’s loyal fanbase makes the upgrade to its 5G enabled smartphones.
Perhaps the most impressive variant of the newly launched series is the iPhone 12 mini. It is smaller and lighter than previous models like the iPhone 8, but has a bigger display, measuring 5.4 inches as compared to the iPhone 8’s 4.7 inch screen. It has the exact same features as the iPhone 12, and is the thinnest and lightest 5G phone in the world, according to Apple. Many customers who are keen to buy the latest iPhone but don’t want to spend much might view the iPhone 12 mini as a very attractive option, considering it is priced at a relatively modest $699 in the US. In comparison, the iPhone 12 costs $799, the iPhone 12 Pro costs $999 and the iPhone 12 Pro Max costs $1099.
Night mode comes to both the Wide and Ultra Wide cameras, and it’s better than ever at capturing incredible low-light shots. LiDAR makes Night mode portraits possible. And the Wide camera lets in 27% more light, for greater detail and sharper focus day or night.
The bigger iPhone maxes out the Pro camera system. A 47% larger sensor and larger pixels dramatically increase the amount of light gathered on the Wide camera. A new OIS stabilises the sensor instead of the lens so your shots are steady — even when you’re not. And the new 65-millimetre Telephoto camera lets you zoom in tighter on portraits.
Yet again, a lot of work has been done to further improve the already impressive camera system of the iPhone. The iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max have the 12 MP Pro Camera system with three cameras: wide(seven-element lens), ultrawide(five-element lens) and telephoto(six-element lens). The iPhone 12 and the iPhone 12 mini have a dual 12 MP camera system with only the ultra wide and wide cameras. Both these cameras have Night mode, and LiDAR makes it possible to take Night mode portraits. According to Apple, the Wide camera allows the entry of 27% more light, for sharper photos. A new Optical Image Stabilizer(OIS) stabilises photos even when the phone isn’t completely steady. Additionally, the new Telephoto camera makes it possible to zoom in more on portraits for greater detail.
Apple also announced a brand new line of accessories for the iPhone, called MagSafe.It includes various products including wireless chargers which use an advanced new system for improved wireless charging. This new line includes brand-new cases for the iPhone 12 which have a magnet so that they easily snap on top of the phone. These covers come in a variety of materials like silicon and leather. Multiple Magsafe accessories can also be used at the same time, such as connecting your MagSafe charger to your MagSafe iPhone cover.
A MagSafe wallet which attaches to your phone, and a MagSafe duo charger for charging your phone and your Apple watch at the same time, have also been launched.
Apple also took a big step towards making its business more environment-friendly. In what has become a highly talked about move, Apple announced that it won’t ship chargers or EarPods (Apple’s wired earphones) in the iPhone box, in order to make the box lighter and smaller, which would make it possible to accommodate more boxes in the same space. The box would still have the lightning to USB-C charging cable.
Apple’s vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives, Lisa Jackson, said that there are around 2 billion Apple power adapters in usage, and a lot of customers already have the adapter. Not putting the charger and the Earpods also means that Apple can ship “up to 70% more items on a shipping pallet ”, according to Jackson. She further stated that these changes made for the iPhone 12 cuts over 2 million metric tons of carbon annually. That’s equivalent to removing 450,000 cars from the world’s roads per year.
Jackson also said that from 2020, every Apple office, data center, and retail store is carbon neutral. The company further aims to have net zero climate impact across the entire Apple business by 2030, including manufacturing and supply chains. Additionally, Apple says it has used 100% recycled, rare earth elements in the magnets for the iPhone camera as well as MagSafe.
Apple certainly is putting in an effort to minimise its impact on the environment. However, a lot of people are unhappy because the iPhone box will no longer have earphones or adapters. While the company’s intentions with this decision are obvious, it may irritate customers who had been waiting a while to upgrade to the 5G iPhone and therefore do not have the latest adapters and earphones.