07/04 Update below. This post was originally published on July 2
We already know a lot about the upcoming iPhone 12 range, including a surprise price cut. But now we have our best look yet at Apple’s all-new designs and it reveals what might be their most overlooked upgrade.
In a new exclusive, YouTuber iupdate has attained the first premium dummy units of the new iPhone 12 line-up and their precise dimensions, finishes and materials show they will not only be Apple’s most stylish iPhones in years but also the nicest to hold in-hand (full video below).
07/04 Update: as detailed below, the exact design of the iPhone 12 range’s cameras remain unknown, but new information now reveals we should expect big things. Following rumors of extreme new iPhone 12 video modes, respected Apple insider PineLeaks has confirmed “we were able to discover evidence of 4k 120 and 4k 240 FPS video modes inside the latest iOS 14 Beta 1 filesystem…Both 4k 120 and 240 FPS will most likely be used for slow motion video. Don‘t expect 4k 240 to be available for normal video. 4k 120 remains possible.” These video modes would represent a seismic leap for smartphone video recording and a massive differential from the competition. With acclaimed Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also promising new “high-end” camera lenses in the range, we should expect significant change to both the look and layout of the primary cameras in all the new iPhones.
“I love it, I really love it when I actually hold [the new models] in my hand,” the YouTuber explains. “This second I went back to my iPhone 11 Pro with the more rounded edges, it felt cheaper. These new phones, regardless of if it’s the cheapest 5.4-inch iPhone or the biggest 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max, they all feel really premium.”
In person, he goes on to say this is “the best looking phone design that I’ve ever held in my hand.” Interestingly, the feel of this new chassis is something popular YouTuber, EverythingApplePro, has also commented on and that was just from basic 3D printed models. The experience of holding these phones looks to be something Apple has aced this year.
The new sizes are also a factor. After time with the models, iupdate notes that the model he was least interested in, the 5.4-inch iPhone 12, ended up being his favorite because it was so compact and usable one-handed (note: it’s even smaller than the new iPhone SE). I suspect this will surprise a lot of buyers and I have already tipped it to become the top selling iPhone 12 model, especially considering its price. Conversely the enlarged 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max is a monster when the two models are positioned side-by-side.
In addition to their improved feel, iupdate also notes that the flat edges actually allow the iPhone 12 range to stand up on their bottom edge – useful for a quick video chat – though not on the sides, due to their buttons. Of these buttons, the unexplained mysterious supersize sim tray still remains.
One area you should ignore with these iPhone 12 dummy units, however, is the camera and notch. Neither is final, as iupdate stresses, and what you see are place holders. Positively, this means that hope remains for inclusion of Apple’s exciting new LiDAR sensor and a smaller notch, which has been in doubt recently. Apple’s decisions here could be crucial, given the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max’s 120Hz ProMotion Displays are also now on the chopping block.
That said, 2020 will see the iPhone range get a lot right (yes, there’s 5G) and their premium new feel in-hand looks set to be their secret weapon.
Follow Gordon on Facebook
More On Forbes