With the iPhone 14 Pro and its own fancy new Dynamic Island, you would be forgiven for forgetting about the new iPhone 14 and the iPhone 14 Plus. That might be a blunder, however. Apple’s less expensive new smartphones might not have the triple-camera array or the entire selection of features that encourage visitors to spend four figures on a fresh handset, but that just makes what’s included even more intriguing.
The effect is a mix of what realy works, blended with a couple of things to provide some 2022 sparkle. Initially, indeed you would be forgiven for not necessarily seeing much difference between this year’s phones and last year’s. Needless to say, what really matters is what’s missing.
Retired with unceremonious haste may be the mini form factor. Apple opted never to replace the iPhone 13 mini having an iPhone 14 mini, with lingering rumors of poor sales of the tiniest iPhone signing the 5.7-inch screen’s death warrant. Certainly, there have been plenty of individuals who said they wanted an inferior smartphone that didn’t compromise on the camera or processor. Problem is, they just didn’t buy it.
A large swing
Instead, in a wholesale swing to the contrary extreme, 2022 may be the year of the big phones. You can find just two sizes of the screen now, for the iPhone 14: either 6.1 inches or 6.7 inches. The latter borrows exactly the same screen dimensions because the iPhone 14 Pro Max, offering a choice for all those wanting more pixels but who don’t necessarily have the necessity or budget for Apple’s most capable handset.
It feels, in the grand scheme of things, such as a sweet spot. The iPhone 13 mini had charm, but felt niche. The iPhone 14 Plus, though, feels as though it will interest far more people. Competitive pricing helps. The iPhone 14 starts at $799, as the iPhone 14 Plus starts at $899. Apple is actually hammering on its trade-in deals, though, which in the U.S. could possibly be around $800 based on what old phone you may have.
A stealthy upgrade
Don’t expect visitors to know you’ve upgraded, mind. Unlike with the Dynamic Island on the iPhone 14 Pro, there is no obvious solution to note that this is actually the iPhone 14 versus the iPhone 13 from leading, at the very least. The familiar but still bizarrely controversial notch remains, with the TrueDepth camera for Face ID. Having seen what Apple did with the dynamically-reshaping blob on its more costly phones, it appears almost a disappointment that the notch stays still.
That isn’t to say they are bad screens, though, with Super Retina XDR OLED panels that support 1,200 nits of peak brightness. The iPhone 14 Plus boasts Apple’s best battery life from an iPhone, therefore the company claims, too. It’ll replenish with MagSafe or Lightning the switch away to USB-C continues to be yet to land and also the chipset inside may be the same Apple A15 Bionic as opposed to the new A16 reserved because of this year’s Pro phones.
What’s missing and could be most controversial may be the SIM slot. In the U.S., at the very least, Apple is pushing people wholesale to eSIM, by ditching the physical SIM tray altogether. Which means forget about buying an unlocked phone and just dropping in your present SIM, or one you get when roaming.
Apple’s argument is that it is in the very best interests of users. In the end, adding a preexisting or new line is, theoretically, much simpler having an eSIM: Apple claims you can also do it minus the iPhone 14 having a WiFi connection. Carriers like eSIM, too, since it makes devices simpler to provision and new lines simpler to upsell.
Yet, I cannot help but wonder whether that is among those decisions that we’ll look back on and rue. Getting from fully-locked smartphones was a problem when it found consumer flexibility: nonetheless, the truth that some devices are SIM-locked could be confusing (and expensive) to everyday tech users. Now, it feels as though we’re handing back a few of that wrested-away control to the networks.
A sensible update
The truth for the common iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Plus buyer, though, is they might possibly not have a have to change SIM through their whole two-year contract. Maybe, then, there’s a disagreement for Apple leaving SIM trays in its Pro series (which it opted never to either) and trialing this arguably consumer-friendly tech on, well, regular consumers.
It’s those regular consumers who I believe will be happy with the iPhone 14, and the iPhone 14 Plus particularly. Big screens sell phones, as do dependable cameras; the changes here aren’t as dramatic because they were for the iPhone 14 Pro camera rig, but 49% better low-light performance is really a big deal.
The iPhone is, needless to say, Apple’s bread and butter. It is the biggest contributor to underneath line, its flagship product, and as Tim Cook said at the keynote today these devices at the biggest market of things such as AirPods and Apple Watch. Don’t assume all iPhone must be a dramatic revolution, exactly like don’t assume all iPhone buyer is necessarily searching for cutting-edge features. The iPhone 14 Plus bringing a more impressive screen at your fingertips of more folks may be enough alone.