Switching from iPhone 12 to iPhone 14: Is it worth upgrading to?
I’ve been an iPhone user for most of my life and I can still remember vividly the day I got my hands on the futuristic looking iPhone 4S back in 2014. It was the pinnacle of smartphone design at the time and the last iPhone designed by the late Steve Jobs. Although it was passed down from my parents, getting an iPhone was all that I wanted, especially since I could now flaunt it in school. Since then, I’ve used several newer models such as the iPhone 8 and iPhone XR, but none have brought that new and futuristic feeling. I upgraded to the iPhone 12 last year and it seemed like a bang for your buck decision considering the price difference and similarity between it and the iPhone 13, and I’ve enjoyed my time so far, until recently.
Apple recently refreshed the iPhone 14 lineup with a mid-cycle colour update and introduced a new Yellow colour, which has caught my eye. I recently got a chance to experience the new and shiny yellow iPhone 14 for a few weeks which Apple launched recently, and the experience has been worthwhile. So, if you’re an iPhone 12 user like me, looking to switch to the iPhone 14 but don’t know if it’s worth it spending your hard-earned money on, then read on.
Display and design
Not sure which
mobile to buy?
First things first, let’s go over the specifications. The iPhone 14 has a 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR display with a refresh rate of 60Hz and a 2532×1170-pixel resolution at 460 ppi. Although specs do matter, I think seeing is believing. The iPhone 14, without the fancy Dynamic Island, has a nearly identical display to the iPhone 12. Even though the notch is smaller, and the bezels are thinner on the iPhone 14, you won’t be able to tell the difference until you have the devices in hand. There’s no ProMotion on the iPhone 14, meaning you’re still stuck with the 60Hz refresh rate seen on the iPhone 12. The peak brightness is a bit higher but until you go outdoors, it won’t matter much.
The design of both the iPhone 14 and iPhone 12 is similar too. Both the phones have an aluminum design, Ceramic Shield at the front and glass at the back. With the iPhone 14 weighing just 10g heavier, there has been no major design change, except the camera module at the back (which we’ll talk about later).
Having said that, the refreshing yellow colour of the iPhone 14 is appealing. Apple has brought back the yellow colour to the iPhone for the first time since iPhone 11 and the new colour has a pastel tone to it. It is not overly yellow like the Poco M3, but instead is a soft shade of yellow, except for the side rails which are a shade darker.
Apple is not known to cut corners with its iPhones, but the Cupertino-based tech giant surprised us all when it announced that the iPhone 14 would be retaining iPhone 13’s A15 Bionic chipset, albeit with some improvements. On the other hand, the iPhone 12 gets an A14 Bionic under the hood. Apple builds its iPhones to last and that is the case here too. Although the iPhone 14 is one of the fastest smartphones in the market, the iPhone 12 does not lag behind, especially in moderate day-to-day usage. Granted that the iPhone 14 will last longer due to being a newer model, but the iPhone 12 does not feel two generations older.
The only features which make the iPhone 14 stand out are Crash Detection and Emergency SOS via Satellite, both of which are not available in India yet.
Camera has always been one of the strong suits of iPhones and this is where Apple’s A15 Bionic with an upgraded 5-core GPU and Photonic Engine shines through. It improves upon the iPhone 12’s Deep Fusion technology to offer stunning image quality on the iPhone 14. You not only get more detailed images with better HDR, but the low-light photography is a massive improvement too. Although the megapixel count has remained the same on the vanilla iPhone 14 as the iPhone 12, the better sensor, coupled with the Photonic Engine, results in crisp, more detailed and better-balanced snapshots.
The Cinematic mode is hands down my favourite camera feature on the iPhone 14 which can record 4K videos up to 60 fps, one feature which I’ll deeply miss once I revert to my iPhone 12. There is a new action mode too which offers 2.8K recording at 60 fps. All in all, if you’re a photo-freak, then upgrading to the iPhone 14 is a no brainer.
Apart from cameras, battery life is another department where the two-generational leap is noticeable. The battery life on the iPhone 14 is a huge improvement over the iPhone 12 and the iPhone easily lasts a day, if not more in moderate day-to-day usage. According to Apple, the iPhone 14 offers up to 20 hours of video playback compared to 17 hours on the iPhone 12, and the difference is a major win for Apple’s current-gen iPhone.
Both the iPhones support fast-charing up to 20W so the time taken to top up the devices remains almost similar.
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 12: Should you upgrade?
If you’re someone looking to upgrade from an iPhone 12 to an iPhone 14, then I suggest you hold on to your current device. Both iPhones have identical designs, except for a smaller notch and the camera module at the back. Although the camera and battery upgrades are significant on the iPhone 14, the lack of new features like the Dynamic Island and ProMotion display decrease the appeal, especially at its hefty price point. Performance remains similar and unless you’re an extremely heavy user, you won’t be able to tell much difference.
So, you’d be better off going for the iPhone 14 Pro models or you can wait for the iPhone 15 series, which is rumoured to bring features like Dynamic Island to all models.