September 25, 2022
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iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max Review: Welcoming Apple’s Dynamic Island

Read Time:15 Minute, 41 Second

This story is part of Focal Point iPhone 2022, CNET’s collection of news, tips and advice around Apple’s most popular product.

Apple’s iPhone 14 Professional and Professional Max could look similar to final yr’s 13 Pro on the again, however do not let that idiot you. It is the 14 Professional’s display the place there’s one thing totally different and fantastic happening. The show notch, which has outlined Face ID iPhones since 2017’s iPhone X, has been changed with a pill-shaped display cutout that homes an upgraded TrueDepth digital camera system.

By itself, that cutout will make some individuals happier than the notch did. But it surely’s the area across the cutout, which now reveals system alerts and background actions, that is turn out to be certainly one of my favourite options. Apple calls it the Dynamic Island, and it enlarges and shrinks while you obtain a name and to show the music you are enjoying, timers and different notifications. I do know it is not the best name, but it surely’s really top-of-the-line options on the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max.

Like

  • The Dynamic Island is pleasant
  • Predominant digital camera takes glorious images
  • A16 Bionic chip is blazing quick

Do not Like

  • Telephoto digital camera is just good in shiny mild
  • Want there was a neater method to simplify the always-on show
  • Each telephones are hefty

The brand new Apple telephones additionally get upgraded cameras, a quicker processor, an always-on show and iOS 16 in addition to new security options together with Crash Detection and Emergency SOS via Satellite.

The 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Professional begins at $999 (£1,099, AU$1,749) and the 6.7-inch 14 Professional Max at $1,099 — that are the identical costs as 2019’s iPhone 11 Professional and 11 Professional Max. After spending a while with the telephones, I feel they’re price each penny.

The brand new Execs are available in area black, gold, silver and deep purple — which, relying on the sunshine, can appear to be a colorless shade of grey or like Grimace purple. The iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max go on sale Friday, Sept. 16, and are currently available for preorder.

iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max pricing breakdown

Telephone US worth UK worth AU worth
iPhone 14 Professional 128GB $999 £1,099 AU$1,749
iPhone 14 Professional Max 128GB $1,099 £1,199 AU$1,899
iPhone 14 Professional 256GB $1,099 £1,209 AU$1,899
iPhone 14 Professional Max 256GB $1,199 £1,309 AU$2,099
iPhone 14 Professional 512GB $1,299 £1,429 AU$2,249
iPhone 14 Professional Max 512GB $1,399 £1,529 AU$2,419
iPhone 14 Professional 1TB $1,499 £1,649 AU$2,599
iPhone 14 Professional Max 1TB $1,599 £1,749 AU$2,769

iPhone 14 Professional: The Dynamic Island defines the Professional

There are few exterior ways in which the iPhone 14 Professional is totally different from earlier fashions. There’s the aforementioned show cutout. The digital camera bump is a skosh chunkier. And, just like the iPhone 14, US fashions lack a SIM card tray and instead use an eSIM.

But it surely’s that surprisingly named Dynamic Island that defines the cellphone. The extra time I spent with the 14 Professional, the extra pleasant I discovered it. It really works in quite a few conditions and is a straightforward method to see what is going on on with out pulling your consideration fully away from what you are doing.

An iPhone 14 Pro with a camera indicator in the Dynamic Island

The Dynamic Island reveals totally different tiny icons and animations. Throughout a FaceTime name, there is a inexperienced digital camera icon on the left facet.


Celso Bulgatti/CNET

The Dynamic Island is interactive. For instance, if music is enjoying, a miniature waveform and tiny thumbnail of the album art work seems on both facet of the cutout. Once you faucet both facet, Spotify brings up the music that is presently enjoying. In the event you’re on a FaceTime name, you may faucet and maintain on the interface to carry up controls.

You’ll be able to faucet instantly on the TrueDepth cameras or off to the perimeters. In my time utilizing it, I did not discover any smudges accumulating over the selfie digital camera and Face ID did not appear to be affected.

You probably have multiple background exercise in progress, like perhaps you are listening to music and have a timer on, the Dynamic Island splits into two components like a sideways lower-case letter i.

The iPhone 14 Professional and the Dynamic Island are a wonderful instance of Apple packaging a robust device into an pleasant interface. It is a disgrace you may solely apply it to the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max. Such a enjoyable and approachable function is sure to be a giant hit with individuals who do not use Professional variations of the iPhone.

iphone-14-pro-iphone-14-8712

Apart from new colours, it is exhausting to inform what’s new in regards to the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max from simply their backs.


James Martin/CNET

The iPhone 14 Professional’s always-on show is quite a bit

The iPhone 14 Professional runs on iOS 16, which provides a bunch of welcome options together with new methods to customise your lock display. However there’s one lock display function reserved for the 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max: an always-on show.

The always-on show is a low-power model of your lock display that may present important data when your cellphone is locked. Most Android phones have had the feature for years, however Apple’s implementation could be probably the most attractive one but.

A hand holding an iPhone 14 Pro with an Always-On display active

The always-on show is a pretty addition to the iPhone.


Celso Bulgatti/CNET

The 14 Professional’s always-on display reveals the time, date, your widgets, notifications and shaded-out model of your lock display’s wallpaper. Relying on how your lock display is about up, it could actually look vastly totally different when it is proven as an always-on show. I had enjoyable auditioning totally different lock display combos of wallpaper and widgets to see how they’d look. The colour wallpaper can also be the most important distinction Apple’s always-on show makes from Android telephones, which usually simply mild up the time and notifications in monochrome.

Seeing my iPhone 14 Professional sitting on a desk with its display on took some getting used to. I stored pondering that I might forgotten to lock it. To wake, simply faucet the display or unlock the cellphone.

When the 14 Professional is confronted down, in a pocket, in a bag or close to one other Apple gadget that you simply’re utilizing, it would not activate. Additionally, there’s an choice in Settings to show it off fully.

I want there was an choice to make the always-on show look extra discreet and, for instance, simply present the time and date. Technically, you might in all probability set a black wallpaper as your lock display and solely choose the date and time for a extra minimal always-on show. Visually, the 14 Professional’s always-on show has quite a bit happening which I discovered distracting when my cellphone was face-up subsequent to me.

Taken in whole, the Dynamic Island, the brand new lock display structure and the always-on show make the 14 Professional probably the most approachable iPhone for managing alerts and notifications. And I think about that have will solely get higher as soon as stay actions for the lock display in iOS 16 is obtainable in full. (The stay actions function shows actual time updates from apps in your lock display, so you may monitor the progress of a rideshare or observe the rating of a sporting occasion.) 

Apple iPhone 14 Pro camera lenses

Look how far the digital camera lenses on the 14 Professional protrude from its physique.


James Martin/CNET

The iPhone 14 Professional and its 48-megapixel digital camera

The iPhone 14 Professional has three rear cameras: a principal wide-angle digital camera, an ultrawide and a telephoto digital camera with 3x optical zoom. The lens on the primary digital camera has a wider focal size, going from a 26mm equal on earlier iPhone fashions to a 24mm one. It isn’t drastically totally different, but it surely helps get extra of the scene into the body.

The primary digital camera additionally will get a brand new bigger 48-megapixel sensor. Whereas extra megapixels would not essentially imply higher images, Apple divides the pixels into teams of 4 and combines them into one bigger pixel. The result’s a 12-megapixel photograph that is brighter, has much less picture noise and higher element.

A streetcar rounding a corner

I took this photograph simply after nightfall. Discover how the 14 Professional was capable of get a shiny publicity with out lots of mild.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The primary digital camera takes glorious images: The picture high quality and particulars are nice for a cellphone. I observed probably the most enchancment is in medium and low-light conditions: Colours look good and textures are nice. Try the photograph beneath, which I took on a foggy morning in San Francisco. Discover the textures within the buildings’ bricks and the gradual manner the 14 Professional captured the fog engulfing the highest of Salesforce Tower.

A bunch of building with a skyscraper covered in fog

Once I took this photograph, there was lots of fog. Discover the small print the 14 Professional was nonetheless capable of seize.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The photograph beneath was shot underneath a palm tree’s darkish cover. The 14 Professional did a strong job of capturing the totally different textures within the leaves and bark whereas additionally boosting the brightness.

Underneath a palm tree looking up

Discover the leaves and bark specifically.


Patrick Holland/CNET

In the event you’re so inclined, you may seize 48-megapixel images utilizing the cellphone’s ProRaw setting. I ought to warn you that these recordsdata are large. The file for the photograph beneath of the Bay Bridge at sundown is 48 megabytes. After enhancing, the photograph is saved as a a lot smaller JPEG. Look carefully on the particulars of the vehicles and the bridge’s assist cables.

The Bay Bridge

This photograph was taken with the total 48-megapixel decision of the primary digital camera’s sensor and saved as an Apple ProRaw file.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The ultrawide digital camera will get a brand new sensor with extra focus pixels and a stepped-down f2.2 aperture lens. All this provides as much as a lot sharper ultrawide images. The sensor — mixed with Apple’s revamped photograph processing, which it calls the Photonic Engine — offers you significantly better images in much less excellent conditions.

A man walking to the counter in a coffeeshop

I like how dramatic the ultrawide digital camera made this man strolling towards a espresso counter look.


Patrick Holland/CNET

Ultrawide images and movies are nonetheless a step down in comparison with these from the primary digital camera, however these enhancements are welcomed.

Macro images additionally get a lift. Once you attempt to take a photograph with the primary digital camera when standing near a topic, the iPhone 14 Professional switches to the ultrawide digital camera and crops the framing to imitate the primary digital camera. This enables for a better focus, which is nice for close-up pictures of small issues. Final yr’s 13 Professional had the same function, however with the brand new ultrawide, macro images have higher picture high quality, particularly in medium and low mild.

A tiny car made from Lego bricks

Macro mode enables you to get inside inches of your topic and have or not it’s in focus, like this Lego automobile.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The telephoto digital camera is principally similar to the one on final yr’s 13 Professional, however will get a raise from the 14 Professional’s Photonic Engine processing. As with the ultrawide, picture high quality is a step behind the primary digital camera — particularly in dimmer environments.

The Embarcadero in San Francisco

I took this photograph of the Embarcadero in San Francisco throughout blue hour with the 14 Professional’s telephoto digital camera.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The TrueDepth digital camera acquired an upgraded lens with a brighter f1.9 aperture. And the selfie digital camera has autofocus for the primary time ever, which works nice for group selfies. Listed here are some extra images that I took with the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max.

Two super smart people posing

The front-facing digital camera now has autofocus.


Patrick Holland/CNET

A black cat lounging on a rug

Indoor pictures underneath blended lighting often look good.


Patrick Holland/CNET

A chocolate cookie with a bite taken out of it

One other macro photograph from the 14 Professional.


Patrick Holland/CNET

img-0111

This bar was fairly darkish, however look carefully on the particulars within the indicators and folks’s pores and skin tones.


Patrick Holland/CNET

Cinematic mode can now document in 4K and at 24 frames per second. There is a new video picture stabilization device known as Motion mode. Once you shoot a video you may toggle it on and the cellphone crops in a bit to maintain the picture centered and the horizon degree. In the event you’re taking pictures in 4K, Motion mode drops the decision to 2.8K however the outcomes are nonetheless spectacular. Whereas different telephones, just like the Galaxy S22 Extremely, have related stabilization capabilities, it is fantastic to see the device come to the iPhone. And it really works throughout all three rear cameras.

Whereas testing video shot with and with out Motion mode, I used to be reminded how good the picture stabilization is in common video mode. Try my overview video, embedded up prime, to see the clips I shot with the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max. 

screen-shot-2022-09-14-at-4-52-19-am

System animations like those for the Dynamic Island are tremendous easy.


Celso Bulgatti/CNET

The iPhone 14 and its A16 Bionic effectivity

Driving all these upgrades is Apple’s new A16 Bionic chip. In use, every thing feels peppy. Gaming is an absolute delight. And refined issues, like animations as you progress out and in of the Dynamic Island, are tremendous easy. In our benchmark exams, the iPhone 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max proved that they are not solely quicker than any iPhone we have ever examined, however they’re the quickest telephones you should buy at this time.

Try our benchmark take a look at outcomes beneath.

Geekbench V.5.0 single-core

Notice:

Longer bars point out higher efficiency

Geekbench V.5.0 multicore

Notice:

Longer bars point out higher efficiency

3DMark Wildlife Excessive

Notice:

Longer bars point out higher efficiency

The common 14 Professional’s battery had no drawback making it via a day. I usually acquired 6 hours of screen-on time. With the 14 Professional Max, I used to be capable of constantly get a day and a half on a single cost.

Charging is OK. I charged the 14 Professional Max for half-hour and the battery went from 14% to 59%. The 14 Professional went from 51% to 84%.

Apple iPhone 14 Pro vs. iPhone 13 Pro camera bump

On the left is the iPhone 13 Professional and on the fitting the brand new iPhone 14 Professional.


James Martin/CNET

iPhone 14 Professional vs. iPhone 13 Professional, 12 Professional, 11 Professional

You probably have final yr’s iPhone 13 Professional, I do not assume you must improve. Whereas the enhancements and new options have lots of sizzle, you do not get a drastically totally different expertise. Improve your 13 Professional to iOS 16 and luxuriate in the brand new options from that software program replace as an alternative.

However you probably have an iPhone 12 Professional and have the itch to improve, the 14 Professional is a large step up when it comes to efficiency, battery life, digital camera high quality and extra options just like the Dynamic Island.

And if you happen to’re rocking an iPhone 11 Professional or older, the iPhone 14 Professional is a big improve throughout.

iPhone 14 specs vs. iPhone 14 Plus, 14 Professional, 14 Professional Max

iPhone 14 iPhone 14 Plus iPhone 14 Professional iPhone 14 Professional Max
Show measurement, decision 6.1-inch OLED; 2,532×1,170 pixels 6.7-inch OLED; 2,778×1,284 pixels 6.1-inch Tremendous Retina XDR, OLED show, 2,556×1,179 pixels 6.7-inch Tremendous Retina XDR, OLED show, 2,796×1,290 pixels
Pixel density 460 ppi 458 ppi 460 ppi 460 ppi
Dimensions (Inches) 5.78 x 2.82 x 0.31 in. 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.31 in. 5.81 x 2.81 x 0.31 in. 6.33 x 3.05 x 0.31 in.
Dimensions (Millimeters) 147 x 72 x 7.8mm 161 x 78 x 7.8mm 147.5 x 71.5 x 7.85mm 160.7 x 77.6 x 7.85mm
Weight (Ounces, Grams) 6.07 oz.; 172g 7.16 oz.; 203g 7.27 oz.; 206g 8.47 oz.; 240g
Cell software program iOS 16 iOS 16 iOS 16 iOS 16
Rear cameras 12MP (large), 12MP (ultrawide) 12MP (large), 12MP (ultrawide) 48MP (large), 12MP (ultrawide), 12MP (telephoto) 48MP (large), 12MP (ultrawide), 12MP (telephoto)
Entrance-facing digital camera 12-megapixel 12-megapixel 12-megapixel 12-megapixel
Video seize HDR video recording with Dolby Imaginative and prescient as much as 4K at 60 fps HDR video recording with Dolby Imaginative and prescient as much as 4K at 60 fps HDR video recording with Dolby Imaginative and prescient as much as 4K at 60 fps HDR video recording with Dolby Imaginative and prescient as much as 4K at 60 fps
Processor Apple A15 Bionic Apple A15 Bionic Apple A16 Bionic Apple A16 Bionic
Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
RAM Undisclosed Undisclosed Undisclosed Undisclosed
Expandable storage No No No No
Battery Undisclosed; Apple lists 20 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 26 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 29 hours of video playback Undisclosed; Apple lists 29 hours of video playback
Fingerprint sensor No (Face ID) No (Face ID) No (Face ID) No (Face ID)
Connector Lightning Lightning Lightning Lightning
Headphone jack No No No No
Particular options 5G enabled; MagSafe; waterproof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (e-SIM) 5G enabled; MagSafe; waterproof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (e-SIM) Dynamic Island; At all times-On show; 5G enabled; MagSafe; waterproof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (e-SIM) Dynamic Island; At all times-On show; 5G enabled; MagSafe; waterproof (IP68); wi-fi charging; dual-SIM capabilities (e-SIM)
Value off-contract (USD) $799 (128GB), $899 (256GB), $1,099 (512GB) $899 (128GB), $999 (256GB), $1,199 (512GB) $999 (128GB), $1,099 (256GB), $1,299 (512GB), $1,499 (1TB) $1,099 (128GB), $1,199 (256GB), $1,399 (512GB), $1,599 (1TB)
Value (GBP) £849 (128GB) £949 (128GB) £1,099 (128GB) £1,199 (128GB)
Value (AUD) AU$1,399 (128GB) AU$1,579 (128GB) AU$1,749 (128GB) AU$1,899 (128GB)
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