CLOSINGS: View Closings

iPhone 12: What you need to know about Apple's new 5G phone lineup

Apple has unveiled its iPhone 12 lineup. The phones are thinner, tougher, and 5G-enabled. The Mini is the cheapest option at $699, and the Pro Max starts at $1099.

Posted: Oct 14, 2020 2:31 PM
Updated: Oct 14, 2020 2:31 PM

Apple's 5G smartphone lineup is finally here.

The company announced four new iPhones in a virtual event on Tuesday — the iPhone 12, the iPhone 12 Pro, the iPhone 12 Pro Max and a new, smaller, iPhone 12 mini. All the phones are 5G-equipped, meaning they can connect to the next-generation high-speed wireless networks.

"This is a huge moment for all of us and we're really excited," Apple CEO Tim Cook said.

Apple will be hoping that its historically loyal user base will continue to shell out the big bucks to upgrade, even as the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the economy and forces millions to stay home. The cheapest phone in its new lineup — the iPhone 12 mini — starts at $699, while the top-of-the-line iPhone 12 Pro Max — featuring Apple's biggest ever smartphone display at 6.7 inches — will start at $1,099.

The iPhone 12 and 12 Pro will be available for pre-order on Oct. 16 and in store on Oct. 23. The iPhone 12 mini and 12 Pro Max will be available for pre-order on Nov. 6 and in store on Nov. 13.

The iPhone 12 comes in five colors — black, white, red, green and blue — and is thinner, smaller and lighter than its predecessor, the iPhone 11, the company said. It also features an upgraded XDR display and a new, tougher glass atop the display that Apple calls Ceramic Shield.

The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini will have two cameras on the back, while the 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max add a third. Apple is also adding several software enhancements to the phones that will enable features such as night mode timelapses.

Apple is preparing for a potential hit to battery life from faster cellular speeds. The iPhone 12 will automatically detect when your phone doesn't need 5G and switch to the slower LTE network to save battery life, the company said.

The latest iPhones are powered by new A14 Bionic chip, which the company boasts is the "fastest... in any smartphone."

In a nod to its past, Apple's reintroducing MagSafe, the name it gave to the magnetic connectors on the power adapters that used to ship with MacBooks before the introudction of USB-C charging. Now, it's using the name to talk about a magnet in the back of the iPhone 12 that helps it snap into place with wireless chargers, for more efficient charging. This also enables certain accessories, both from Apple and third parties, to snap on to the back of it, like a slim wallet the company showed off. Wireless charging will also work through some accessories.

Behind the camera lenses

As it does every year, Apple is enhancing the iPhone's camera systems.

The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini feature a dual-camera system on the back, with wide and ultra wide lenses, while the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Max add a telephoto lens.

The new devices also use software for better "computational photography," enhancing images by allowing more light and sharper focus while also enabling features such as Night Mode on the wide, ultra wide and front-facing cameras across models.

The Pro Max supercharges the camera even further, with Apple naturally touting it as the "best camera ever" on an iPhone. Its lenses allow up to 5x zoom from ultra wide to telephoto -- the zoom from the main wide camera to the telephoto is now 2.5x. The image sensor on the wide-lens cameras on Pro models is 47% larger than on previous iPhones, enabling better low-light photography.

What's not in the box

Apple will ship the iPhone 12 without headphones or a charging brick, a move aimed at cutting down on waste.

More than 2 billion Apple power adapters are out in the world, and many customers already have wired headphones or AirPods, vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives Lisa Jackson said.

"Removing these items also means a smaller, lighter iPhone box," Jackson said. "We can fit up to 70% more items on a shipping pallet," reducing shipping emissions.

The new iPhone also uses 100% recycled rare earth elements for all magnets, including in the camera and haptics.

Will people buy it?

The last time Apple released a phone into so much economic uncertainty was the iPhone 3G in July 2008, when the United States was already in a recession and just before the financial crisis escalated with the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers. Now, Covid has cast a shadow over all aspects of life in 2020, including smartphone upgrade cycles, and not even Apple is immune. The company typically announces new iPhones in September, but this year the pandemic disrupted supply chains, leading it to announce that the smartphones would ship out later than usual.

There's also the question of how much of a motivator 5G will be in convincing users to make the switch to the iPhone 12. Apple is relatively late to the 5G game — competitors like Samsung, Motorola, LG and Google have had 5G smartphones on the market for months — but 5G networks themselves are still at a nascent stage. A full rollout of 5G networks across the United States is expected to take another five to seven years, according to analysts.

Only 13% of smartphones sold in the first half of 2020 had 5G capabilities, and only 6% of customers would rank 5G as a primary factor in their next smartphone purchase, according to research firm Canalys.

For now, the list of consumer services and capabilities enabled by 5G remains relatively short. Uploads and downloads will be faster over the new network, which will be especially noticeable with big files like videos or movies. Over high-band 5G networks, it may be possible to download a two hour movie in fewer than 10 seconds, versus around 7 minutes with 4G.

It will take some time for more services taking advantage of 5G's speeds and bandwidth to be built, meaning consumers may want to wait to shell out for a 5G device.

But wait, there's more

Apple also rolled out a new iteration of its smart speaker called the HomePod Mini.

The speaker has new acoustic technology that give it better 360-degree sound quality, the company said, and multiple HomePod Minis can connect to each other to create a home entertainment system. The speaker also connects to Apple's Home app to control lights, thermostats and other smart home gadgets.

The HomePod Mini goes on sale November 6 and will cost $99.

-- CNN Business' Kaya Yurieff, Rachel Metz and Clare Duffy contributed to this report.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 312969

Reported Deaths: 3637
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin661641115
Ramsey27766505
Anoka22149228
Dakota22015190
Washington13999115
Stearns13733116
St. Louis8747112
Scott846255
Wright775843
Olmsted665634
Sherburne587641
Clay498457
Carver474213
Blue Earth414116
Rice412836
Kandiyohi408122
Crow Wing359634
Otter Tail314322
Chisago311611
Nobles308730
Benton299451
Winona276930
Mower261623
Douglas260337
Polk256324
Morrison231629
Lyon218711
Beltrami217117
McLeod212812
Becker205415
Goodhue203228
Steele19497
Isanti190617
Itasca190423
Carlton185816
Todd181214
Nicollet162525
Mille Lacs153631
Freeborn15336
Le Sueur147011
Cass143710
Brown141315
Waseca139211
Pine13658
Meeker12879
Roseau11964
Hubbard114925
Martin113320
Wabasha10561
Redwood94619
Chippewa8877
Cottonwood8664
Renville86527
Dodge8600
Watonwan8544
Wadena8016
Sibley7934
Rock7779
Aitkin76730
Pipestone72518
Fillmore6990
Houston6984
Yellow Medicine64812
Pennington6478
Kanabec61913
Murray5873
Swift5838
Faribault5612
Pope5391
Clearwater5248
Stevens5103
Marshall4979
Unassigned49359
Jackson4881
Lake4226
Koochiching3926
Wilkin3895
Lac qui Parle3773
Lincoln3591
Norman3497
Big Stone3182
Mahnomen2964
Grant2796
Kittson2248
Red Lake2133
Traverse1481
Lake of the Woods1001
Cook720

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 227398

Reported Deaths: 2368
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk33642336
Linn14352165
Scott1124986
Black Hawk10893135
Woodbury10372126
Johnson955336
Dubuque923291
Story678822
Dallas637257
Pottawattamie631970
Sioux370325
Webster358535
Cerro Gordo357144
Marshall348546
Clinton331344
Buena Vista305414
Des Moines291520
Muscatine289268
Warren281914
Plymouth276042
Wapello255772
Jones232313
Jasper217944
Marion205320
Lee203917
Carroll198422
Bremer195212
Henry18307
Crawford174616
Benton170619
Tama154340
Jackson144613
Delaware144221
Washington141314
Dickinson139210
Boone137011
Mahaska126827
Wright12456
Clay11784
Buchanan117010
Hardin115810
Page11374
Hamilton11199
Clayton11175
Cedar108413
Harrison107729
Kossuth10667
Calhoun10617
Floyd105016
Mills10487
Fayette103910
Lyon10338
Butler10216
Poweshiek99313
Winneshiek97613
Iowa95812
Winnebago93023
Hancock8677
Grundy86311
Louisa86216
Sac8608
Chickasaw8574
Cherokee8484
Allamakee81811
Cass81623
Mitchell7984
Appanoose79312
Humboldt7715
Union7706
Shelby76511
Emmet76424
Guthrie75415
Franklin73921
Jefferson7142
Madison6864
Unassigned6690
Palo Alto6554
Keokuk5997
Howard5599
Pocahontas5584
Greene5250
Osceola5241
Ida48913
Clarke4874
Davis4709
Taylor4653
Montgomery46311
Monroe44412
Adair4418
Monona4352
Worth3630
Fremont3583
Van Buren3585
Lucas3256
Decatur3170
Wayne3007
Audubon2962
Ringgold2112
Adams1702
Rochester
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 29° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 19°
Mason City
Clear
30° wxIcon
Hi: 30° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 23°
Albert Lea
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 30° Lo: 15°
Feels Like: 22°
Austin
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 29° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 21°
Charles City
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 30° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 19°
Colder Conditions To Start The Workweek
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Kindness tree on display in Rochester

Image

Advice for safe holiday decorating

Image

Aaron's Sunday Night Forecast

Image

Active shooter police standoff resolved after 9 hours

Image

Standoff in Albert Lea after 3 people shot

Image

Christmas tree shopping

Image

MC 'grateful' to play, adjusting with schedule changes

Image

Small business Saturday

Image

Sean's Weather 11/28

Image

Sidelined in quarantine: Coach Fennelly talks about his experience away from the game

Community Events