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iPhone 12 vs. iPhone 11: Every major spec Apple changed in 2020


The iPhone 12 comes in five colors.

Screenshot by CNET

This story is part of Apple event, our full coverage of the latest news from Apple̵

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On Tuesday, Apple revealed four iPhone 12 models: iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max. That iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro are available for pre-order now, while the iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max will be available from November 13 (here’s how to pre-order all four iPhone 12 models). If you are considering upgrading from last year iPhone 11 for iPhone 12, you may be wondering: What exactly is the difference?

We have gathered all of them Specifications for iPhone 12 and prices to help you see how the new phone stacks up against the iPhone 11. You can also decide if you should buy a new iPhone now or wait, and best ways to sell or shop on your old iPhone.

Read more: Our first impressions of the iPhone 12, 12 Mini, 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max

Here’s everything you need to know about how the iPhone 12 compares to the iPhone 11.

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iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, Pro and Pro Max explained


Screens in different sizes

Apple announced four iPhone 12 models: iPhone 12 Mini (5.4 inches), the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro (6.1 inches) and iPhone 12 Pro Max (6.7 inches). By comparison, there are only three iPhone 11 devices: the iPhone 11 (6.1-inch), the iPhone 11 Pro (5.8 inches) and iPhone 11 Pro Max (6.5 inches).

Same refresh rate

Although there was speculation that the iPhone 12 Pro’s screen might have a 120Hz refresh rate and a ProMotion display (like the iPad Pro), this ended up being a rumor. Both iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 are updated at 60 frames per second or 60Hz. Most phones are the same. But some, like Galaxy S20 and OnePlus 8 Pro, update at 120Hz. The higher the refresh rate, the faster and smoother a phone feels as you scroll through apps and websites.

Better cameras

As is typically the case with new iPhones, the iPhone 12 has it upgraded camera features over the iPhone 11 – especially the iPhone 12 Pro models. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini largely stick to the iPhone 11’s camera design with regular, ultra-wide and selfie cameras. But they also offer Night Mode photos, which now also work on ultra-wide cameras and selfie cameras, and enhanced HDR mode for challenging scenes with light and dark elements.

Read more: iPhone 12, HomePod Mini and everything Apple announced

Meanwhile, the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max get major shooting enhancements, including a larger image sensor and a fourth telephoto camera for more distant subjects as well. The iPhone 12 Pro has the same 2x zoom telephoto range as previous iPhones – a 52mm equivalent focal length – but the Pro Max expands to 2.5x zoom or a 65mm equivalent lens.

Despite this, it is iPhone 11 camera is nothing to sneeze at: It has a night mode and one ultrawide-camera that can add extra detail in photos along with a good camcorder.

The addition of 5G

All iPhone 12 models offer next generation 5G mobile connection, which virtually all new Android phones arriving in the US already have. This means that phones can tap into the wireless high-speed network on the go – which may seem a little less exciting during the pandemic, as we spend more time at home, but will still future-proof your device for the rise of 5G.

The iPhone 11 does not offer 5G connectivity, although many people seem to do so think it does.


The 2019 iPhone 11’s base model cost $ 699, which was $ 50 less than the iPhone XR 2018. Now, with the addition of the iPhone 12, the price of the iPhone 11 has dropped to $ 599.

The iPhone 12 Mini costs $ 699, the iPhone 12 is $ 799, the iPhone 12 Pro is $ 999, and the iPhone 12 Pro Max is $ 1,099.

For more on iPhone 12 and everything else that Apple announced, see our summary. You can also check out ours review of iPhone 11 and all its features.

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Everything Apple announced at its iPhone 12 event


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