First Impressions of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, and Also the iPad Air

iPhone 12

I did not order one of the 6.1 inch iPhone 12s, simply because I am way more interested in either the iPhone 12 mini and the iPhone 12 Pro Max. So no physical phone for me to play for now.

How does one get to see the actual phones in an Apple Store in these pandemic days? Why, an Apple Shopping Session of course.

I booked one for Saturday at the nearest Apple Store to me, Apple Jewel Changi Airport.

After a good dinner, some queuing and the usual check-in process, I was accomplished by an elderly female staff member, who was friendly and tried her best to accomolate my wishes to see the various items. She was unfortunately probably the most clueless staff that I have ever met in a local Apple Store, often making mistakes about very basic terms and features and unable to answer any of my questions. I always wonder what standard makes the cut for being an Apple Staff, I guess being friendly and unthreatening is all that is required these days.

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The Store was not too crowded when I arrived around 5pm (my appointment was at 7:30pm), but by the time my appointment rolled by there was a long queue just to get in. The Store was pretty crowded when I got served. The female Staff led me to a table where there were only four iPhone 12/Pros, as the table with all the current models was occupied. After some attempt by her to give me a basic sales talk, I got to some serious scrutinizing.

The first thing that struck me was the screen. The OLED screen on the 12/Pro look really crisp and nice, even though it was supposed to be on the same level as that of my iPhone 11 Pro Max. Maybe I am not just used to seeing the OLED screens without any glass screen protectors in between, but they were really nice. The new body shape definitely feels a lot nicer in the hand, and MagSafe for iPhone is COOOLLLL. Decided to go MagSafe for my eventual iPhone 12 charging right there and then.

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The most important aspect of the iPhone 12/Pros is of course, the colours.

This year’s lineup of colors for the non-Pro models are pretty lame, with a mint and pale green and a salmon red colour that is closer to orange than to red. The white model also looks like it has a slight champagne tone in the Apple Store lighting. While I will have definitely preferred a more vibrant blue, there is no mistaking that the iPhone 12 Blue is the best colour in the whole line-up, both non-Pro and Pro phones. The Black is nice too. Anyone going for a non-Pro iPhone 12 should go for either the Blue or the Black, the other colours really do not cut it.

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Pro-wise, all the colours are pretty dull and average, even compared to last year. Apple is pushing Pacific Blue as the colour to buy, but I have to say that it is probably even more boring than Midnight Green last year. Graphite is looking decent and safe, and Gold is for the rich Asians/wannabes. Buy Silver if you want to polish the stainless steel frame after every scratch. If you have to get a iPhone 12 Pro or Pro Max, maybe buy the Pacific Blue or Graphite. But actually they are all decently average, so any colour is fine. The expensive iPhones never had the best colours anyway.

12

Now you know that with the Apple Store’s lighting it was next to impossible to test the capablities of the iPhone 12’s cameras, but on first looks they do not seem too different from the cameras of the iPhone 11 and 11 Pros. The biggest upgrade has to be the availablity of Night Mode in all the cameras, instead of just the wide cameras in the 11 series. Again, cannot be test in store. You just have to take Apple’s word for it that they are better this year.

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Oh, and the Apple Silicon cases are totally a must-buy this year. For the first time since Apple made iPhone cases (non-battery ones) they have a range of cases that cover the bottom of the iPhone. Pair that with the MagSafe capability makes the Silicon Case a must buy this time round.

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Lastly, I took a look at new iPad Air colours before leaving. Sky Blue is so nice on the Air. Why do we not have that colour on the iPhones? Apple (or Alan Dye) is an arse.


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