Unboxing the Apple iPhone 12 – first impressions

October 22nd, 2020 | by Grace Chng
Unboxing the Apple iPhone 12 – first impressions
Different brightness of three phones: From left iPhone 10 XS Max, iPhone 11 and iPhone 12. PHOTO: Grace Chng

This time tomorrow, there will be thousands of 5G iPhone 12 users in Singapore as Apple’s latest smartphone becomes available.

Of the four models Apple announced last week, the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro are available from Oct 23. However, pre-orders for  the iPhone Mini and iPhone Pro Max will be start on Nov 9.

I have just charged up the iPhone 12 unit which I received today for a review. This is the entry-level iPhone 12.

It looks sleek with its aerospace-grade aluminium edges and edge-to-edge OLED display. It feels nice and comfortable in the hand and the screen looks much brighter than the iPhone 10 XS Max and iPhone 11.

 The iPhone 12 comes in a box that is smaller than the iPhone 11.  PHOTO: Grace Chng

The packaging is now smaller as the AC power adapter and headphones have been stripped away as part of Apple’s environmental move.

Apart from the iPhone 12 in the box, you get a USB-C to Lightning cable and the little pin that helps you remove the SIM card tray.

The USB-C to Lightning cable should fit into the existing Apple iPhone 10 and 11 power adapters. However, they will not be as fast in charging compared the new MagSafe adapter which magnetically attaches to the back of the iPhones for speedier charging.

Only a USB-C-to-Lightning cable is in the box. No power adapter. PHOTO: Grace Chng.

I was disappointed not to find the MagSafe cable together with the iPhone 12. It costs an extra S$59 in the Apple store. Apple iPhone 12 cases from the clear ones to the silicon variety comes with MagSafe usability.

The phone in the case can be charged with the MagSafe which is compatible with Qi charging accessories too. The MagSafe technology has also been licenced to third-party manufacturers like Belkin, so expect to see a slew of new MagSafe accessories emerging.

The brain of the iPhone 12 as well as the other three models is Apple’s A14 Bionic chip. It has given the phones faster performance and energy efficiency. Battery life has also improved.

I will be testing the 5G speeds on the phone, but first I’ve to find the 5G hotspots around Singapore as there are few of them here. I take many photos of my dogs that will put the iPhone 12 to the test.

With an improved dual-camera system, it can shoot images with more details around the edges as well sharper shots in low-light environments. My pets are wriggly, not likely to stand still for a pose, so with iPhone’s auto lens correction, their images and videos will turn out better.

MagSafe is built into Apple’s silicon cases, making it work with the new charging technology. PHOTO: Grace Chng

If in the course of taking photos, I accidentally drop it, chances of the screen surviving unscathed is high. The glass on the smartphone is made with an all-new material called Ceramic Shield which is scratch resistant and said to be four times more durable.

Since the glass sits flush to the edge of the phone, the protection seems better. I will take Apple’s word on this, since I’m not going to drop the phone deliberately. 

The iPhone 12 is now sold in Apple stores, authorised retailers and service providers. It comes in five colours – white, black, blue, green and red – and in three capacities, 64GB, 128GB and 256GB.

Prices start from S$1,299. The iPhone Pro is also available now in 128GB, 256GB and 512GB models in graphite, silver, gold and blue. Prices start from S$1649.

However, to use the 5G, consumers will have to pay S$5 to S$10 more a month, depending on their data plan and service provider. The MagSafe charger is also available now.

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