Apple iPhone 14

MSRP $799.00

“The iPhone 14 is not an enormous improve in contrast its predecessor. However with an awesome design, display screen, efficiency, and cameras, that is removed from a nasty factor in any respect.”

Professionals

  • Comfy, high-end construct
  • OLED display screen appears implausible
  • A15 chip performs nice
  • Good digital camera upgrades
  • Reliable battery life
  • Useful security options

Cons

  • 60Hz show
  • No telephoto digital camera
  • eSIM could be a ache for some

“It’s simply one other iPhone.” That’s how I’ve heard lots of people confer with the iPhone 14 — and for good cause. In comparison with final yr’s mannequin, the iPhone 14 is a very acquainted smartphone. It has the identical design, display screen, chipset, and a really related digital camera system.

However right here’s the factor. These similarities shouldn’t come as a disappointment. The iPhone 14 takes a really sturdy basis, retains what works, and provides a number of refined enhancements that make it a greater general handset. It’s removed from the yr’s most invigorating or jaw-dropping launch, but when what you’re available in the market for is “simply one other iPhone,” the iPhone 14 makes an awesome case for itself.

iPhone 14 design

An iPhone 14 laying on a table.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

This welcome familiarity is seen instantly with the iPhone 14’s design. The iPhone 14 nonetheless has a 6.1-inch show with a notch, Apple’s Ceramic Defend masking that show, and an aerospace-grade aluminum body. You’re additionally handled to the identical sq. digital camera housing on the again with the angled sensors, although they’re barely bigger than the iPhone 13. The iPhone 14 can be 0.15mm thicker and 2g heavier, however in any other case, it’s the identical feeling and looking phone as final yr.

In my ebook, that is nary a nasty factor in any respect. Perhaps it’s as a result of I switched to the iPhone 14 from my a lot heavier iPhone 13 Professional, however the iPhone 14 feels fantastic to carry. It’s sturdy, light-weight, and the aluminum sides are impervious to fingerprints.

Someone holding a blue iPhone 14 in one hand and a purple iPhone 14 in another hand.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

I additionally fairly like Apple’s choice of colours this yr. Apple despatched me the iPhone 14 in purple, which appears like a muted lavender in individual. It’s very refined and never too vibrant, however I’ve beloved carrying it round with me whereas reviewing the iPhone 14. The redesigned blue coloration can be nice (and appears higher than the iPhone 13’s blue, in my view). The purple coloration is considerably extra vibrant this yr, plus midnight and starlight stay trusty impartial choices.

The iPhone 14 feels fantastic to carry.

Different mainstays of the iPhone 13 are additionally current on the iPhone 14. An IP68 score protects it from mud and water, it’s totally appropriate with MagSafe equipment, and — sure — there may be nonetheless a Lightning port on the underside as an alternative of USB-C.

Is that this a recent or thrilling design? In no way. Other than the completely different colours, the iPhone 14 actually does look an identical to the iPhone 13. I get that some folks have been hoping for a drastic redesign, however I’m completely satisfied Apple caught with this physique for one more era. The iPhone 14 has confirmed sensible and comfy in every day use, and it has appeared good whereas doing so. Name it boring in order for you, however it’s a smartphone design I can’t assist however completely get pleasure from.

iPhone 14 display screen

An iPhone 14 standing up, propped against a succulent.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

Apple’s recycling of final yr’s {hardware} additionally works out properly for the display screen … largely.

The iPhone 14 is provided with a 6.1-inch OLED display screen with a 2532 x 1170 decision. There’s HDR help, as much as 800 nits of max typical brightness, and 1,200 nits of peak HDR brightness — all the identical specs we bought with the iPhone 13.

In virtually each regard, this stays an awesome show setup for the iPhone 14. Colours are punchy (however not overly saturated), textual content and icons look nice, and the show is a lot seen in vibrant rooms or exterior on a sunny day. Whether or not I’m watching a YouTube video, taking a look at outdated pictures, or studying an article from one in all my colleagues, the iPhone 14’s display screen permits all of it to pop.

Someone holding an iPhone 14. The display is turned on and showing the Control Center.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

The place the iPhone 14 show disappoints is with its refresh price. Just like the iPhone 13 Professional and Professional Max final yr, the iPhone 14 Professional and iPhone 14 Professional Max once more have 120Hz screens. The baseline iPhone 14, nonetheless, is once more caught with a 60Hz one. In comparison with phones with 120 or 90Hz refresh charges, issues like scrolling and swiping look choppier on the iPhone 14.

Being caught with 60Hz on the iPhone 14 is a disgrace.

iOS 16’s easy animations and the good efficiency out of the A15 Bionic preserve the iPhone 14 from ever feeling sluggish or sluggish, however it’s nonetheless disappointing to not see any enchancment right here. Within the Android area, it’s not unusual to see phones for $600, $500, and even $400 with 90 or 120Hz refresh charges. Being caught with 60Hz on the iPhone 14, a phone that begins at $799, is a disgrace.

iPhone 14 cameras

An iPhone 14 resting inside of a decorative lamp.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

The iPhone 14 Professional has stolen many of the digital camera limelight for its new 48MP main sensor, however that doesn’t imply the conventional iPhone 14 is a slouch. Like so many different features of the phone, the iPhone 14’s cameras are loads just like the iPhone 13 however barely improved in some key methods.

You continue to have a 12MP main digital camera, however it’s a bigger sensor with an f/1.5 aperture to seize extra gentle and make lowlight photographs look higher. The front-facing digital camera is much more improved. The megapixel rely stays at 12MP, however it has a bigger f/1.9 aperture (in comparison with f/2.2 on earlier iPhones) and introduces autofocus for the primary time. The 12MP ultrawide digital camera is strictly because it was on the iPhone 14’s predecessor.

Sounds nice! However what does any of this imply for photograph high quality? Beginning with the 12MP important digital camera, it has the entire similar qualities we noticed with the iPhone 13. In good lighting situations, the iPhone 14 can produce actually beautiful pictures. Colours are vibrant and true to life, photographs have a load of wonderful particulars, and the Digicam app captures pictures shortly for quick, reliable capturing. And in these well-lit situations, the bigger sensor offers some topics a pure depth of subject, permitting you to get portrait-like photographs with out utilizing the devoted Portrait mode.

I’ve additionally been largely pleased with lowlight photographs. In a darkish room at evening with minimal lighting, the iPhone 14 can nonetheless take superb pictures with ample element (the photograph of my cat sleeping on a pillow is a superb instance).

For scenes which might be actually darkish, the iPhone 14 mechanically switches to Night time mode. It’ll mechanically maintain publicity for round 2 or 5 seconds, however you may drive it to go on for 30 seconds if you actually need it. In these situations, the iPhone 14 does a very good job of letting ample gentle into to show a pitch-black scene into one thing that’s really seen. However the extra you deliver the lights down, the softer and softer particulars change into.

An outdoor photo of the sky and a pond, taken with the iPhone 14.

An outdoor photo of the sky and a pond, taken with the iPhone 14.

  • 1.
    Photograph from the iPhone 14’s important digital camera
  • 2.
    Photograph from the iPhone 14’s ultrawide digital camera

What concerning the ultrawide digital camera? Despite the fact that it’s the identical because the iPhone 13’s, it’s been extraordinarily dependable throughout my testing. Colours are almost an identical to the primary digital camera, the broader view is useful, and particulars look fairly good contemplating the ultrawide nature of the factor.

A selfie of Joe Maring and his dog, taken with the iPhone 14.

Joe Maring/Digital Traits

A selfie of Joe Maring, taken with the iPhone 14.

Joe Maring/Digital Traits

A selfie of Joe Maring, taken with the iPhone 14.

Joe Maring/Digital Traits

A selfie of Joe Maring, taken with the iPhone 14.

Joe Maring/Digital Traits

And, after all, we now have to speak concerning the new selfie digital camera. I’ll say upfront that I’m not a selfie man. I’ve by no means been one to take plenty of selfies, and I don’t anticipate that the iPhone 14 will change that about me. Besides, it’s fairly outstanding how significantly better the iPhone 14’s new selfie digital camera actually is.

Due to the addition of autofocus, pictures usually look sharper throughout. From finer particulars in your hair and face to taking up-close photographs of you and your folks, autofocus provides a brand new layer of flexibility that may actually take selfies to the following degree. And like the primary digital camera, the bigger aperture leads to higher pure bokeh and respectable outcomes even when the lights go down.

iPhone 14 efficiency

Call of Duty: Mobile on an iPhone 14.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

One of the crucial controversial modifications with the iPhone 14 is one thing that didn’t change in any respect. Normally, Apple offers each new iPhone a brand new chipset to energy it. The iPhone 12 sequence bought the A14 chip, the iPhone 13 lineup was powered by the A15, and all iPhone 14 handsets have the A16 — proper? Not precisely.

Whereas the iPhone 14 Professional and iPhone 14 Professional Max have a brand new A16 chipset, the iPhone 14 (and iPhone 14 Plus) nonetheless have the A15. It’s the extra highly effective model of the A15 used within the iPhone 13 Professional with 5 GPU cores as an alternative of the 4 used within the regular iPhone 13, however in any other case, it’s the very same processor.

There’s been loads of backlash in opposition to this determination as one other means for Apple to stifle innovation and save a buck. And possibly it’s! However I’d be mendacity if I mentioned I used to be upset about having the A15 within the iPhone 14.

The A15 remains to be an unbelievable cellular chipset.

Merely put, that is nonetheless an unbelievable cellular chipset. Each day apps like Twitter, Outlook, and Instagram run and not using a hitch. Video games are nice, too. I’ve performed plenty of Name of Obligation: Cellular on the iPhone 14, and from the graphics to border price, every part performs completely. The iPhone 14 additionally touts a brand new thermal design, supplying you with higher warmth dissipation in comparison with the iPhone 13. I solely bought the iPhone 14 to get noticeably heat as soon as throughout testing, and that was after 30+ minutes of downloading quite a few information for CoD: Cellular with the show on. In any other case, the phone has run cool as a cucumber no matter which apps or video games I’m operating.

iPhone 14 eSIM

Someone holding up an iPhone 14 to their ear.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

Talking of controversy, we should always take a minute to speak about eSIM. When you purchase an iPhone 14 within the U.S, it doesn’t include a bodily SIM card. As a substitute, mobile service is barely accessed through a digital eSIM. We’ve had eSIM expertise in smartphones for years, however the iPhone 14 is the primary main smartphone to solely have eSIM and no possibility for a bodily SIM card.

In my very own expertise, this hasn’t been an issue in any respect. I already had my quantity as an eSIM on my iPhone 13 Professional and transferred it to the iPhone 14 in about two minutes. Apple guides you thru this course of throughout setup, and you may entry eSIM switch/activation settings at any time within the Settings app. And even in case you have an older iPhone that’s nonetheless utilizing a bodily SIM card, Apple’s labored with main carriers within the U.S. to make the switch course of as seamless as potential.

Transferring an eSIM from an old iPhone to an iPhone 14.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

Whereas I’ve had no points with eSIM on the iPhone 14, that doesn’t imply it hasn’t been inflicting complications for some folks. When you’ve got service by means of a smaller supplier like Mint Cellular, transferring your SIM might require utilizing your service’s app or having to name customer support. Transferring your SIM from an Android phone additionally comes with its personal complications, and there have been some studies of eSIM transfers taking hours (and even days) with some numbers.

Simply transferred a T-Cellular eSIM from a 13 Professional to a 14 and yeah— the entire course of for transferring eSIMs is shockingly fast and easy

eSIM isn’t with out its faults, however it’s additionally not the massive scary monster some are making it out to be https://t.co/gHNg6KKs2O

— Joe Maring (@JoeMaring1) September 15, 2022

That is a type of issues the place your mileage will range. When you’re coming to the iPhone 14 from an outdated iPhone, the eSIM switch course of ought to be pretty easy — regardless when you’re already utilizing eSIM or nonetheless have a bodily SIM card. Issues stand to be extra sophisticated when you’re switching from an Android phone, and when you plan on doing plenty of worldwide journey, there are challenges to think about there, too. There’s definitely nonetheless work to be executed right here, and though eSIM is way from excellent, it hasn’t executed something to tarnish my time with the iPhone 14. Right here’s to hoping Apple and carriers could make that the case for everybody sooner reasonably than later.

iPhone 14 car crash detection and satellite tv for pc connectivity

Person holding iPhone 14 with Emergency SOS via satellite notifications.Apple

Two different large options with the iPhone 14 are car crash detection and satellite tv for pc connectivity — two options I’ve been unable to attempt with my iPhone 14.

The previous is fairly self-explanatory. When you’re concerned in a extreme car crash, the iPhone 14 makes use of a wide range of sensors to detect modifications in pace and cabin strain, extraordinarily loud sounds, and a sudden shift within the course you’re heading. If it determines that you just have been concerned in an accident, the iPhone 14 shows a car crash display screen with buttons to name emergency companies or dismiss the pop-up. When you don’t reply inside 10 seconds, emergency companies are mechanically known as for you. Apple says it used 1 million hours of “real-world driving and crash information” to construct the iPhone 14’s car crash detection. Wanting me getting in an accident to check the characteristic myself, I’ll take Apple at its phrase that the characteristic works as meant.

In an analogous vein, the iPhone 14 additionally brings Emergency SOS through satellite tv for pc. When you’re in a state of affairs the place you need assistance however don’t have entry to mobile information or a Wi-Fi connection, the iPhone 14 means that you can hook up with a satellite tv for pc and ship a message to emergency companies. Like car crash detection, it’s a type of options you hope you by no means have to make use of.

Regardless, I’m actually glad Apple added these items this yr. Yearly enhancements to processor pace, show decision, and digital camera megapixels are nice. However these are options that would legitimately save your life. Apple’s advertising might lay it thick with the severity of them, however there may be weight to what the corporate is saying. I pray that I by no means get in a nasty car wreck or change into injured and stranded someplace, however within the occasion that I do, it’s reassuring to know that the iPhone 14 has the mandatory instruments to be helpful in these conditions.

iPhone 14 battery and charging

The battery page on an iPhone 14.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

Lastly, let’s speak about battery life. Apple made vital battery strides with the iPhone 13 sequence, and with the iPhone 14, it claims that endurance is even higher. Whereas I’m not hitting the 20 hours of video playback Apple touts on its web site, the iPhone 14 has persistently gotten me by means of every day I’ve used it — even once I’m actually pushing it.

Right here’s what a typical day with the iPhone 14 has appeared like for me, I’ll watch about an hour of YouTube, play 30-ish minutes of Name of Obligation: Cellular, and often use numerous different apps like Twitter, Safari, Microsoft Groups, Outlook, Apple Music, and extra all through the day. After over 14 hours of uptime with over 5.5 hours of screen-on time, I’ve about 25% battery life left within the tank.

On a lighter day with over 15 hours of use and about 4 hours of display screen time (with little or no gaming), I ended the day with 38% nonetheless remaining. The iPhone 14 will seemingly be a one-day phone for most individuals, however I’ve been capable of very comfortably get by means of every day even with pretty heavy utilization. Play a number of video games, watch some movies, and take as many footage as you need. As long as you aren’t in your phone 24/7, you need to have the ability to finish every day with the iPhone 14 with little-to-no battery nervousness.

The bottom of an iPhone 14, showing its speaker grille and Lightning port.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

Apple didn’t make any charging enhancements this yr, however the choices out there are wonderful. You should utilize the Lightning port to get wired charging speeds as much as 25W, Qi wi-fi charging delivers as much as 7.5W, and a supported MagSafe charger (my most well-liked methodology of charging) delivers as much as 15W of energy. There’s no ultra-fast wired charging such as you’ll discover on the OnePlus 10T or Oppo Reno 8 Professional, however possibly Apple will get round to including that subsequent yr with the iPhone 15.

The iPhone 14 is a superb improve, when you want it

Someone holding an iPhone 14.Joe Maring/Digital Traits

That’s the iPhone 14. Its cameras are nicer, it’s barely higher with demanding video games, and it has a few spectacular security options that you just’ll (hopefully) by no means have to make use of. However they’re there simply in case.

I completely perceive why some folks have dismissed the iPhone 14 as an ‘iPhone 13S’ and as a tool you need to ignore. But it surely’s the final part I disagree with. If you have already got an iPhone 13 and don’t see any cause to improve, that’s most likely the best name.

However in case you have an iPhone XR, iPhone 11, and even the iPhone 12, the iPhone 14 is a phone I’m very happy to suggest. When you don’t care concerning the Dynamic Island, 120Hz refresh charges, or a telephoto digital camera, the iPhone 14 is hands-down one of the best iPhone you should purchase at present. Even when it’s slightly boring.

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