Apple Goes Premium With iPhone 12 Pro, Pro Max

Premium models with premium prices. Apple’s top end smartphone line up includes iPhone 12 Pro and the slightly larger Pro Max

Apple used Tuesday’s launch event of its new iPhone 12 and HomePod Mini, to also offer two smartphone models aimed firmly at the premium customer.

Tim Cook during his presentation made no secret of the fact that sitting alongside the mainstream iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini, the iPhone 12 Pro, and the larger iPhone Pro Max, are for users “who want the absolute most from an iPhone, including premium materials.”

Apple on Tuesday revealed that all iPhone 12 models are 5G equipped, with prices starting at $699 for the iPhone Mini and $799 for the iPhone 12.


iPhone 12 Pro, Pro Max

“The iPhone 12 Pro models feature a new design and edge-to-edge Super Retina XDR displays, the largest ever on iPhone, protected by the all-new Ceramic Shield front cover, which provides the biggest jump in durability ever on iPhone,” Apple announced.

Under the hood there is Apple’s new A14 Bionic chip, coupled with a “reimagined pro camera system” that includes “an expansive Ultra Wide camera, a Telephoto camera with an even longer focal length on iPhone 12 Pro Max, and new Wide cameras to capture beautiful professional-quality images and video in bright and low-light environments.”

And the iPhone 12 Pro models also introduce a new LiDAR Scanner, which Apple says will provide “ommersive augmented reality (AR) experiences.”

Another development is MagSafe (also found on the iPhone 12), which offers high-powered magnetised wireless charging accessories that easily attach to iPhone.

The 6.1-inch OLED iPhone 12 Pro and 6.7-inch OLED iPhone 12 Pro Max (the iPhone 11 Pro Max only had a 6.5 inch display) feature the largest Super Retina XDR displays ever on iPhone.

“This is a huge leap for iPhone, bringing the best 5G experience in the market and delivering our most advanced technologies to users who want the absolute most from their iPhone,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior VP of Worldwide Marketing.

“Each generation of iPhone has changed what we expect from a smartphone, and now with 5G, iPhone 12 Pro provides a new generation of performance,” said Joswiak. “Our tight integration of hardware and software enables incredible computational photography features like the expansion of Night mode to more cameras, and introduces support for HDR video with Dolby Vision.”

“A state-of-the-art LiDAR Scanner means users can experience AR like never before, and also offers benefits to the camera with faster autofocus in low light and the introduction of Night mode portraits,” said Joswiak. “These experiences and so much more make this the best iPhone lineup ever.”

iPhone 12 Pro models come with IP68 rating to withstand water submersion up to 6 meters for up to 30 minutes, and are protected against everyday spills.

Both models are offered in four stainless steel finishes, including graphite, silver, gold, and pacific blue. It can be pre ordered on Friday, 16 October.

Prices start at $999 for the iPhone 12 Pro (128GB version), and $1,099 for the Pro Max.

However more budget aware iPhone buyers, who doesn’t need 5G capabilities, should note that the price for the iPhone 11 has now dropped to $599

Will they buy?

At least one analyst believes that the addition of 5G capability will see a number of iPhone users opting to upgrade to the iPhone 12.

“Given the current renewal cycles, a significant percentage of Apple users will leapfrog to the new range of iPhone 12 devices and benefit from an amazing performance and experience compared to what they know,” said Forrester’s VP principal analyst Thomas Husson.

“Such experiences can only improve in the next 18 to 24 months as telecom operators roll out 5G across the world,” said Husson. “Increased performance, mastery of design execution details, and aggressive pricing for the iPhone 12 mini will offer an incredibly competitive smartphone experience.”

“That said, Apple will do more for 5G than 5G will do for the new iPhones,” said Husson. “Indeed, despite the hype, 5G is still a relative immature technology globally being rolled-out by network operators and there are few new compelling consumer use cases.”

“5G is way more important for the industry as a technology empowering a new wave of innovation and performance for the connected world,” said Husson. “Even if 5G roll out is faster than the previous network generations, it will take a couple of years before we reach critical mass of end-users and experiences that go beyond faster speeds and better latency.”

“Thanks to aggressive pricing and advanced integrated services with its Apple ecosystem such as the new Intercom service, the new HomePod Mini is also likely to sell well in the coming months,” said Husson. “These keynote announcements demonstrate one more time that the total Apple experience is more than the sum of the device parts.”