Ought to You Improve to the iPhone 14? How It Compares to Older iPhones

This story is a part of Focal Level iPhone 2022, CNET’s assortment of stories, ideas and recommendation round Apple’s hottest product.

Apple’s new iPhone 14 lineup is now on sale, aside from the iPhone 14 Plus, which arrives Oct. 7. With a brand new era right here, you is perhaps questioning if it is time to improve. The reply largely is dependent upon which telephone you at present have. You probably have a current mannequin just like the iPhone 13 or 12, you’ll be able to afford to attend. In case your telephone is older although, it is price determining how a lot you may achieve by leaping to a more moderen iPhone.

The $799 (£849, AU$1,399) iPhone 14 brings modest enhancements which might be appreciated however not game-changing, like nitty-gritty digicam enhancements, car-crash detection and the help for satellite-based emergency messaging. (Hopefully, you may by no means be in a state of affairs the place you may want to make use of the latter two).

Ought to You Improve to the iPhone 14? How It Compares to Older iPhones

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iPhone 14 Evaluation: A Respectable Improve for Most


The iPhone 14 Professional and Professional Max’s upgrades are extra dramatic, however you continue to do not want to improve except you’ll be able to rating an amazing trade-in deal. Apple saved its most fascinating new options for the Professional lineup, together with the Dynamic Island that replaces the notch, the brand new A16 Bionic processor and a 48-megapixel essential digicam sensor. If you happen to favor bigger telephones, you might need to wait till Apple releases the iPhone 14 Plus earlier than making your resolution. 

It is essential to keep in mind that you do not have to purchase the iPhone 14 to get digicam, battery and efficiency enhancements over an earlier iPhone. The lately discounted $699 iPhone 13 or the smaller $599 13 Mini could possibly be a great choice when you nonetheless need extra storage, quicker efficiency and an improved digicam, particularly in case you are coming from a telephone that is three years outdated or extra. It is also the one choice if you would like the smaller Mini and its 5.4-inch display, because the iPhone 14 line eliminates that measurement in favor of the brand new $899 iPhone 14 Plus with a 6.7-inch display. 

Buying selections will at all times fluctuate relying on funds, how nicely your telephone works proper now and your private wants, so there isn’t any easy reply that works for everybody. However listed here are the largest variations between the iPhone 14 lineup and former iPhone generations to assist making a decision.

iPhone 13 leaning against surface

The iPhone 13.

Patrick Holland/CNET

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13, 13 Professional, 13 Professional Max

The iPhone 14 lineup introduces new options resembling car-crash detection, the removing of the bodily SIM card for US telephones, and enhanced cameras on the rear and entrance. Regardless of these modifications, iPhone 14 is not completely different sufficient to justify upgrading from the iPhone 13. And though Apple lastly removed the notorious notch within the Professional Fashions, the 14 and 14 Plus nonetheless have one — it is the identical smaller notch that debuted on the iPhone 13 collection. In actual fact, the iPhone 14 represents “some of the minimal year-over-year upgrades in Apple’s historical past,” based on CNET’s Patrick Holland, who reviewed Apple’s newest telephones. 

The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus have the A15 Bionic chip from final yr’s iPhone 13 Professional and iPhone 13 Professional Max. The 14’s display seems precisely just like the one on the 13. Maybe probably the most distinguished change this yr is the introduction of a bigger model of the iPhone 14 referred to as the iPhone 14 Plus, which has a 6.7-inch display just like the Professional Max. Which means you now not must splurge on Apple’s costliest iPhone if you would like the most important display potential. 

In fact, the iPhone 14 continues to be extremely rated, however we suggest saving your cash and skipping the improve. If you happen to’ve made up your thoughts to improve, we recommend going for an iPhone 14 Professional or iPhone 14 Professional Max when you can afford it. These telephones are costly, however buys you entry to some salient modifications — particularly a high-refresh charge show, Apple’s new Dynamic Island multitasking bar, an always-on show in addition to higher cameras amongst different options.

The underside line: You probably have an iPhone 13 or 13 Professional, do not improve. However in case you are decided to get a brand new telephone, go for the iPhone 14 Professional or 14 Professional Max, particularly when you will need to have the Dynamic Island proper now. 

Learn Extra: iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max Evaluation

The purple iPhone 12

The iPhone 12.

Sarah Tew/CNET

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 12, 12 Professional 

Though the iPhone 12 lineup was launched two years in the past, they nonetheless share many similarities with Apple’s newest telephones. Each the iPhone 12 and iPhone 14 help 5G, run on quick processors, provide nice cameras and embrace MagSafe accent compatibility.

For the reason that iPhone 14 is extra of a refresh than a significant improve, we suggest hanging onto your iPhone 12 if it is nonetheless in good situation. You may reap the benefits of the iPhone’s newest software program options resembling lock display customizations, widgets and the flexibility to unsend textual content messages by upgrading to iOS 16.

The iPhone 14 obtained just a few notable digicam upgrades, like a bigger sensor, a brand new lens with a quicker aperture, improved photograph processing and Motion Mode which makes the actions in movies look smoother once you document them.

However the iPhone 12’s cameras stay glorious though they’re two years outdated. The iPhone 12 has a 12-megapixel twin digicam system, whereas the iPhone 12 Professional features a third digicam with a telephoto lens. Take a look at our iPhone 12 overview to see how the cameras held up when CNET put them by means of the paces.

It is price remembering that you just get extra noticeable upgrades with the iPhone 14 Professional and Professional Max. These embrace every little thing that is new within the 14, in addition to an upgraded essential digicam with a bigger 48-megapixel sensor, an ultrawide digicam that means that you can take Macro pictures and a 3rd digicam with a telephoto lens. If you may get a great trade-in deal that considerably knocks down the iPhone 14 Professional’s worth, upgrading from the common iPhone 12 is an honest step-up. 

The underside line: Maintain onto your iPhone 12 for an additional yr because the iPhone 14 is not dramatically completely different. Nevertheless, the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max deliver extra important modifications that could possibly be worthwhile when you can snag a great trade-in deal. 

Learn Extra: All The “New” iPhone Options That Have Been on Android For Years

The iPhone 11.

The iPhone 11.

Angela Lang/CNET

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 11, 11 Professional

If you happen to’re utilizing an iPhone 11, we suggest upgrading to an iPhone 14 (and even an iPhone 13). Within the final three years, Apple has made sufficient modifications to options together with battery life, efficiency, display high quality, cameras and sturdiness to benefit shopping for a brand new iPhone. 

Upgrading to the iPhone 14 will get you 5G help, extra storage (128GB on the base stage versus 64GB) a greater essential digicam with a wider aperture lens, new video taking pictures choices like Motion mode and Cinematic mode, a greater selfie digicam with Evening mode and Apple’s Photonic Engine processing, compatibility with Apple’s MagSafe equipment, longer battery life and quicker efficiency. That is along with car-crash detection and Apple’s new emergency satellite tv for pc messaging characteristic. 

Many of the pictures and videography enhancements are dramatic modifications in comparison with the iPhone 11. And the longer battery life and extra space for storing are welcomed upgrades that you will discover every day.

As beforehand talked about, when you go for the 14 Professional as a substitute, you get a brand new 48-megapixel essential digicam, a better 3x optical zoom versus the 11 Professional Max’s 2x zoom, the Dynamic Island as a substitute of the notch and quite a few different upgrades like an always-on show.

The underside line: The iPhone 14 lineup consists of sufficient modifications to justify upgrading from the iPhone 11. But when your telephone continues to be in good situation and also you’re happy with it, set up iOS 16 and maintain onto it for an additional yr. 

The iPhone XS

The iPhone XS

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iPhone 14 vs. iPhone XS, XS Max, XR

If you happen to purchased the iPhone XS, XS Max or XR at launch, which means your telephone is roughly 4 years outdated and could also be beginning to really feel sluggish. That alone makes a robust case for upgrading, however there’s a lot extra to realize. 

In comparison with the iPhone XS, the iPhone 14 supplies six hours of further battery life (based on Apple’s estimates). Along with every little thing that is new within the iPhone 14 particularly, you may additionally get different upgrades Apple has added to the iPhone over the previous few years. 

These embrace 5G help, extra storage (once more, you get 128GB versus 64GB), quicker efficiency and a greater digicam. The iPhone XS era lacks Evening mode for taking clearer photos at the hours of darkness, and it additionally does not have Deep Fusion, which is Apple’s title for its picture processing method that improves element and readability in darker environments. The XS’s entrance digicam has a decrease 7-megapixel decision in comparison with the bigger and newer 12-megapixel sensor on the iPhone 14. If you happen to’re upgrading from an iPhone XR, you may additionally get a further digicam with an ultrawide lens for taking broader group pictures for the primary time. 

The iPhone 14 additionally has a bigger 6.1-inch display in comparison with the iPhone XS’ 5.8-inch show (the iPhone XS Max has a 6.5-inch display, whereas the XR’s display can also be 6.1 inches). The design has additionally modified fairly a bit over the previous 4 years; newer fashions have flat edges, a barely smaller notch, completely different finishes and a brand new “squircle”-shaped digicam module that replaces the pill-shaped rear digicam cutout. So your telephone won’t solely really feel extra fashionable, nevertheless it’ll look newer, too. 

The underside line: You probably have an iPhone XS, XS Max or XR, it is undoubtedly price upgrading. You get a noticeable increase in digicam high quality, battery life and efficiency amongst different areas.

The iPhone X

The iPhone X.

James Martin/CNET

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone X

The iPhone X is about 5 years outdated, which suggests it in all probability feels gradual and its battery life is not what it was. With an iPhone 14, you may discover a significant improve in each classes, in addition to design, improved sturdiness, connectivity and digicam high quality. 

Let’s begin with efficiency. The iPhone X runs on a a lot older A11 Bionic chip that is now 5 years outdated, whereas the iPhone 14 runs on Apple’s A15 Bionic processor. The iPhone 14 Professional and Professional Max run on Apple’s newer A16 Bionic chip. Each new processors are means forward of the A11 chip, which solely has a two-core neural engine in comparison with the A15 Bionic’s 16-core neural engine. 

The iPhone’s neural engine powers duties that depend on machine studying and synthetic intelligence, which have gotten a much bigger a part of the iPhone expertise. Issues like app strategies within the App Library and Apple’s Translate app depend on machine studying to operate, which signifies that the iPhone X might battle to maintain up with newer capabilities.

The iPhone X additionally has a dual-lens digicam just like that of the iPhone XS, that means it is lacking the iPhone 14’s digicam {hardware} enhancements along with Evening mode, Deep Fusion and the flexibility to manage depth-of-field and blur ranges in Portrait mode. Just like the iPhone XS, you are solely getting a 7-megapixel entrance digicam in comparison with a 12-megapixel selfie digicam on Apple’s newer telephones.

Apple’s five-year-old iPhone additionally has shorter battery life, with Apple estimating it ought to final for 13 hours when enjoying again video in comparison with 20 hours on the iPhone 14. The iPhone 14’s 6.1-inch display is larger than the 5.8-inch show on the iPhone X, and it must also be brighter since it may possibly attain 800 nits of max brightness in comparison with the iPhone X’s 625-nit display.

The iPhone 14 helps Dolby Atmos and spatial audio playback, whereas the iPhone X simply has stereo playback. That is in all probability not a deal-breaker, however is perhaps essential when you watch loads of video in your telephone with out headphones.

And naturally, there’s the good thing about getting car-crash detection, Apple’s new emergency SOS messaging through satellite tv for pc choice, higher water resistance (as much as 6 meters for half-hour versus 1 meter), 5G help, extra space for storing, Ceramic Defend for the show, a refreshed design and the choice to make use of MagSafe equipment on the iPhone 14.

The underside line: You probably have the iPhone X, it is time to improve. The iPhone 14 will really feel new in nearly each means, from the digicam to efficiency, battery life and the best way it seems and feels. 

iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus

The iPhone 8 and eight Plus.

Gabriel Sama/CNET

iPhone 13 vs. iPhone 8, 8 Plus

The iPhone 8 era has Apple’s legacy iPhone design, which is becoming for a telephone that is now 5 years outdated. You probably have an iPhone 8 and are contemplating an improve, lots of the causes to do this are the identical as the explanations to improve from the iPhone X. The processor is getting outdated, which may make it tougher to make use of newer iPhone options that depend on machine studying. The cameras are outdated and lack options like Evening mode (the smaller iPhone 8 does not have Portrait mode both, because it solely has one lens). By upgrading, you may get extra storage, considerably longer battery life, help for 5G connectivity and MagSafe equipment, too.

However the greatest distinction is within the iPhone 8’s design, which is rather more than simply an aesthetic improve. Telephones with Apple’s extra fashionable edge-to-edge display commerce Contact ID for Face ID, which helps you to unlock your telephone and authenticate funds simply by taking a look at your system. If you happen to favor Contact ID over Face ID, particularly because it’s troublesome to make use of Face ID whereas sporting a masks, you would possibly need to at the very least take into account upgrading to the $429 iPhone SE, because it has the identical processor because the iPhone 13, 5G compatibility and loads of pictures enhancements inside the same physique to the iPhone 8.

Upgrading to the iPhone 14 has a noticeably massive leap in show measurement and high quality. Since newer telephones just like the iPhone 14 do not have a house button, there’s extra room for Apple to increase the display with out making the system really feel cumbersome. The iPhone 14’s display is even bigger than the iPhone 8 Plus’ 5.5-inch display regardless of the system itself feeling extra compact. (And for extra perspective, take into account that the iPhone 13 Mini has a 5.4-inch show). If you happen to go for the 14 Professional you get one other massive change: the Dynamic Island, which transforms the notch space into an space for viewing alerts, system notifications and apps working within the background like Spotify or Apple Music. 

From private expertise, switching from an iPhone 8 (which has a 4.7-inch display) to the iPhone 12’s 6.1-inch show makes studying, checking e mail and watching movies rather more comfy. The display is not solely bigger, nevertheless it’s additionally extra vibrant with higher distinction because it makes use of an OLED show quite than LCD.

The underside line: The iPhone 14 is a large leap from the iPhone 8. The whole lot about this telephone will really feel quick and new: the a lot bigger and bolder display, Face ID, the faster processor, its longer battery life and naturally the considerably upgraded cameras. Of word nonetheless, when you actually need to get a more moderen iPhone however preserve the iPhone 8’s design, commerce as much as the present 2022 iPhone SE.

The iPhone 7 Plus and 7.

The iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone 7.

Sarah Tew/CNET

iPhone 13 vs. iPhone 7, 7 Plus

You probably have an iPhone 7, it is time to improve. It’s six years outdated, and it reveals in every little thing from the processor to the digicam and space for storing. The iPhone 7 does not help iOS 16, offering much more incentive for buying a more moderen system. 

Whereas we typically suggest selecting the iPhone 14 Professional over the iPhone 14 generally, coming from a telephone this outdated, means you may discover a lot that is new within the iPhone 14. 

The iPhone 7 runs on an ageing A10 Fusion processor, which does not also have a neural engine and is a number of years behind Apple’s newest know-how. It has a single-lens digicam with out Portrait mode, whereas the 7 Plus has two cameras. However these cameras lack many fashionable options like Evening mode and Portrait Lighting, which provides particular lighting results to your portraits. 

Just like the iPhone 8, the iPhone 7 collection consists of Contact ID and is available in both 4.7- or 5.5-inch display sizes. However because the iPhone 7 is a yr older than the iPhone 8, it is also lacking wi-fi charging, which suggests you need to plug it in to cost. 

If you happen to’ve owned an iPhone 7 for a number of years, it is in all probability bursting on the seams because it has considerably much less space for storing. The entry-level iPhone 7 solely got here with 32GB of house, which is 1 / 4 of capability accessible on the most affordable iPhone 14. 

The iPhone 14 brings main positive aspects in practically each facet. The usual mannequin has a bigger, bolder and brighter bezel-free 6.1-inch display that also feels compact because it does not have a house button. It runs on Apple’s A15 Bionic processor, which is healthier geared up to deal with newer iOS options. And it has a drastically improved dual-lens digicam with a bigger essential digicam sensor and superior options like the brand new Cinematic mode for video and Evening mode. Plus, Apple’s estimates point out it’s going to provide seven hours of further battery life throughout video playback, which is a large bump.

The underside line: If you happen to’re nonetheless holding onto your iPhone 7, there isn’t any query that you just’re due for an improve. A greater display, compatibility with iOS 16, longer battery life and extra superior cameras are just some of the positive aspects the iPhone 14 has to supply over the iPhone 7. And just like my suggestion with the iPhone 8, when you actually need to preserve the house button and avoid wasting cash, take into account the iPhone SE. It provides you newer efficiency upgrades whereas protecting the same telephone fashion.

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