Apple sells eight completely different iPhone fashions that date again to 2020. That could be a vital distinction to when Steve Jobs launched the iPhone in 2007 when the one possibility was getting 4GB or 8GB of storage. Whereas there is no such factor as a real “finest” iPhone, relying in your wants, funds and preferences, some iPhone fashions are positively higher for you than others. With the addition of the iPhone 14 series and the discontinued iPhone 11, 13 Professional and 13 Professional Max strolling off into the sundown, deciding on the proper one may be complicated.

By way of costs, the present iPhone lineup begins as little as $429 for the 2022 iPhone SE and tops off at $1,599 for the iPhone 14 Pro Max with a whopping 1TB of storage. Beneath are the assorted fashions, their launch date, the variety of rear cameras they’ve, their processor and their present checklist value, which for some telephones features a $30 activation price that is waived in case you activate your iPhone on a provider on the time of buy. And in case you’re searching for the best iPhone deals, we have now you coated there too. 

Present iPhones, in contrast

Mannequin US beginning value Display dimension No. of rear cameras CPU Launch date
iPhone SE $429 4.7 inches 1 A15 Bionic March 2022
iPhone 12 $629 6.1 inches 2 A14 Bionic October 2020
iPhone 13 Mini $629 5.4 inches 2 A15 Bionic September 2021
iPhone 13 $729 6.1 inches 2 A15 Bionic September 2021
iPhone 14 $829 6.1 inches 2 A15 Bionic September 2022
iPhone 14 Plus $929 6.7 inches 2 A15 Bionic October 2022
iPhone 14 Professional $999 6.1 inches 3 A16 Bionic September 2022
iPhone 14 Professional Max $1,099 6.7 inches 3 A16 Bionic September 2022

Whether or not it is the tiny iPhone 13 Mini and its 5.4-inch display screen or the 2020 iPhone 12, you even have loads of choices to decide on to your excellent cellphone. Navigating Apple’s iPhone spectrum may be overwhelming, whether or not you are contemplating colours (the iPhone 13 is available in six), or options just like the iPhone 14 Professional’s Dynamic Island, which expands and contracts to indicate system alerts.

Then there are the cameras. The iPhone usually has among the best cameras found on any phone. However the iPhone SE has only one on the again. The 12, 13, 13 Mini, 14 and 14 Plus every have dual-rear cameras. After which there’s the 14 Professional and 14 Professional Max that not solely have a trio of cameras however include options like the power to take ProRaw photos or record ProRes videos.

Learn extraBest Wireless Earbuds for 2023: Top Options at Every Price

To additional complicate issues, carriers like AT&T, T-Cellular and Verizon in addition to third-parties like Finest Purchase and Amazon proceed to promote discontinued fashions such because the iPhone 13 Professional and 13 Professional Max. After which there’s the costs. Apple’s beginning value for every mannequin is not essentially what you will pay. Practically the entire telephones on this checklist may be bought for significantly less with a mixture of trade-ins and/or service commitments with most US wi-fi carriers.

I do know, it is rather a lot. However I’ve examined all eight variations of the iPhone and can assist you navigate by way of all of the noise.

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After I reviewed the iPhone 14, I stated it was primarily the iPhone 13 Professional’s processor and most important digital camera contained in the physique of an iPhone 13. Little doubt, some will probably be dissatisfied that the iPhone 14 is not radically completely different from earlier fashions. However that is a part of its allure. Familiarity has been one of many keys to Apple’s success with the iPhone. And because the saying goes, “if it ain’t broke, do not repair it.”

The iPhone 14’s finest options are ones chances are you’ll by no means see or use — and that is not essentially a foul factor. That features Crash Detection, which may notify emergency companies if you’re in an vehicle accident. Beginning in November, you will get Emergency SOS through Satellite tv for pc that allows you to use a satellite tv for pc to message emergency dispatchers in locations with out cell protection.

And whereas the iPhone 14 has a virtually equivalent flat-sided design because the iPhone 12 and 13, together with a ceramic defend protecting and a water-proof physique, the within has been fully redesigned. The 14’s back-glass is less complicated and extra reasonably priced to restore because it’s not hooked up to internals.

All telephones within the iPhone 14 sequence solely use eSIMs within the US and have a brand new selfie digital camera that for the primary time ever has autofocus. Add in a brand new video stabilization device referred to as Motion mode, an upgraded Cinematic mode that may seize 4K video at 24fps and iOS 16, and you’ve got a wonderful cellphone. Should you activate it on a provider, Apple drops the worth to $799. Read our Apple iPhone 14 review.

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From the again, the $999 iPhone 14 Professional seems to be equivalent to final yr’s 13 Professional. However do not let that sameness idiot you. It is the 14 Professional’s display screen the place there’s one thing completely different and fantastic occurring. The show notch, that outlined earlier Face ID iPhone fashions, has morphed right into a pill-shaped display screen cutout that may present system alerts and background actions like if you obtain a name or play music. Apple calls this performance the Dynamic Island. I do know, it isn’t the very best title, nevertheless it’s actually among the best options.

The iPhone 14 Professional has a 6.1-inch adaptive-refresh-rate display screen that adjusts between 1 and 120Hz relying on what’s on the display screen. It additionally will get upgraded cameras, a quicker processor, an always-on show, iOS 16 and new security options like Crash Detection and Emergency SOS through Satellite tv for pc. Driving all these upgrades is Apple’s new A16 Bionic chip, which in use feels peppy. 

The primary digital camera will get a brand new bigger 48-megapixel sensor. Whereas extra megapixels does not essentially imply higher pictures, Apple divides the pixels into teams of 4 and combines them into one bigger pixel. The result’s a 12-megapixel photograph that is brighter and has much less picture noise and higher element.

The iPhone 14 Professional is the among the best telephones launched by Apple or any phone-maker this yr. Read our Apple iPhone 14 Pro review.

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The $729 iPhone 13 remains to be a wonderful cellphone. The truth is, in case you’re tempted by the iPhone 14 and need to avoid wasting cash, seize a 13. They’ve primarily the identical physique, similar display screen and similar A15 Bionic processor. Though technically, the iPhone 14’s processor does have an additional GPU core.

The iPhone 13, just like the 12 earlier than it, is outlined by its square-sided design. It helps 5G, MagSafe charging and has cameras on par with those from 2020’s top-of-the-line iPhone 12 Professional Max.

However the iPhone 13’s finest function is its bigger battery that, in our assessments, lasted 4.5 hours extra on a single cost than the iPhone 12, and practically 3 hours longer than the brand new iPhone 14.

The 13 additionally has Cinematic mode, which is mainly a video model of Portrait mode, and iOS 16, This all provides as much as a wonderful cellphone. The iPhone 13 earned a 2021 CNET Editors’ Alternative Award. Additionally, in case you activate it on a choose provider at buy, Apple drops the worth to $699. Read our Apple iPhone 13 review.

James Martin/CNET

The $929 iPhone 14 Plus is both an enormous iPhone 14 or a scaled-back iPhone 14 Professional Max, relying in your perspective. Ever for the reason that iPhone XS Max launched in 2018, there was just one possibility for individuals who love massive screens: Pay prime greenback and get a Max mannequin with further options you won’t essentially want (like a telephoto digital camera or a excessive refresh price show). I do know many CNET readers, pals and associates who’ve shelled out $1,100 or extra for an iPhone 12 Professional Max or 13 Professional Max as a result of it was the one option to get a cellphone within the dimension they wished. However that adjustments now.

The 14 Plus has the entire iPhone 14’s options and, just like the 14 Professional Max, it has a 6.7-inch show that provides you a bigger canvas for watching movies, taking part in video games and taking pictures. The 14 Plus can both allow you to match extra onto the display screen or simply present all the pieces the iPhone 14 does however a lot larger. A magnified view looks like such an earthly function, but as my eyes grow old, I positively welcome it.

If you’re deciding between the iPhone 14 Plus and the iPhone 14 Professional Max and you do not want a telephoto digital camera, a high-refresh-rate display screen or further weight, I say go together with the 14 Plus and save $200. Should you activate it on a provider, Apple drops the worth to $899. Read our Apple iPhone 14 Plus review.

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Who stated small telephones do not exist in 2022? The $629 iPhone 13 Mini is good as a result of it has all the pieces the iPhone 13 has — it is simply smaller. It has the identical square-edged seems to be, assist for 5G and the identical cameras. The 13 Mini’s defining function is its 5.4-inch OLED display screen that helps Dolby HDR. If that sounds too small, contemplate that Plus fashions, just like the iPhone 8 Plus, had a 5.5-inch display screen inside a a lot bigger physique. The 13 Mini’s secret is that it lacks these big brow and chin bezels that outlined the iPhone for its first decade.

The display screen is roofed with Apple’s ceramic defend and the physique, like practically all telephones on this checklist, has an IP68 score for mud and water resistance. The 13 Mini has an A15 Bionic processor which places it on the identical degree of efficiency because the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus.

The iPhone 13 Mini is the very same value because the iPhone 12, however the Mini truly lasts longer on a single cost than the larger iPhone 12. I solely advocate you get the 13 Mini for its dimension. Should you aren’t OK with a small cellphone, you could be dissatisfied or pissed off. And in case you activate it on a provider, Apple drops the worth to $599. Read more about the Apple iPhone 13 Mini.

James Martin/CNET

The $1,099 iPhone 14 Professional Max is only a massive model of the iPhone 14 Professional. It has the identical A16 Bionic processor, the identical cameras and the identical options. However it does differ in two massive methods from the 14 Professional: It has a much bigger 6.7-inch high-refresh price display screen and a much bigger battery. The truth is, in our assessments, the iPhone 14 Professional Max had the longest battery lifetime of any cellphone on this checklist.

The iPhone 14 Professional Max is excellent in each means. However I solely advocate getting it in order for you a much bigger Professional mannequin iPhone, as a result of it weighs rather a lot. It is 34 grams heavier than the iPhone 14 Professional and 37 grams heavier than the iPhone 14 Plus. Most of that weight comes from the 14 Professional Max’s stainless-steel physique. Read our Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max review.

Sarah Tew/CNET

The $629 iPhone 12 and its flat-sided design marked the start of the present era of Apple telephones. Of all the pieces on this checklist, it is the oldest but additionally one of many least expensive, particularly if you wish to snag an iPhone with a recent look and Face ID.

The iPhone 12 has a 6.1-inch show coated in Apple’s ceramic defend for sturdiness, a still-very-fast A14 Bionic chip, 5G support and MagSafe charging.

The iPhone 12 earned a 2020 CNET Editors’ Alternative Award. Should you select to get an iPhone 12 and might afford to pay $50 extra, I positively advocate upgrading from 64GB of storage to 128GB. The iPhone 12 begins at $629, however in case you activate it on a provider, Apple drops the worth to $599. Read our Apple iPhone 12 review.

Kevin Heinz/CNET

At $429, you would possibly suppose the one attraction of the iPhone SE (2022) is its value. And admittedly that may be a massive issue. On the surface, the iPhone SE has the identical physique because the iPhone 8, which makes it the one iPhone on this checklist that also has Contact ID. On the within, the SE has the identical A15 processor because the iPhone 13, 13 Mini, 14 and 14 Plus which takes the 2017 digital camera {hardware} and offers it an injection of Apple’s computational images magic.

The SE represents the basic iPhone design however with the added capacity to run the newest model of iOS and apps. One of many quieter updates in 2022 was that the SE’s again was upgraded to the again glass used on the iPhone 13 and 13 Mini. The iPhone SE is just your most reasonably priced means into all of Apple companies like FaceTime, iMessage and iCloud. Read our Apple iPhone SE (2022) review.

Key phrases


An eSIM takes the entire essential details about your cellphone account — together with its quantity, wi-fi provider and subscription — and shops it in software program as a substitute of on a bodily SIM card.

With the iPhone 14, Apple eliminated the bodily SIM card tray and embraced embedded SIM playing cards. This implies you can’t just pluck your SIM card out of your current phone and put it into a new one. However this should not have an effect on your expertise since all the foremost US carriers and a number of smaller operators work with eSIM.

Apple has lengthy supported eSIM, relationship all the best way again to 2018’s iPhone XS, XS Max and XR. When organising a brand new iPhone 14, the gadget will information you thru transferring your present supplier over to the brand new cellphone. An inventory of supported wi-fi networks can be found on Apple’s website.

iOS 16

Apple’s iOS 16 is the newest model of Apple’s iPhone software program. It is on the iPhone 14 by default and can also be obtainable as an replace for the iPhone 8 and later. iOS 16 consists of new options comparable to customizable lock screens, an replace to the Messages app that enables for unsending and editing iMessage texts and new photo editing tools.

How we take a look at telephones

We consider every iPhone mannequin on its total high quality, options, design, efficiency, cameras, battery life and worth. We take a look at telephones in the actual world, utilizing them as our most important gadget to make calls, play video video games, take pictures and browse apps and social media. We doc our experiences in an preliminary evaluation which we periodically replace with further assessments and evaluating them towards new telephones from different firms like Samsung, Google and OnePlus.

Pictures is commonly a significant focus and we take footage and movies of various topics in quite a lot of settings and lighting eventualities. We check out any new digital camera modes, comparable to Action mode that debuted with the iPhone 14 line.

Battery testing is carried out by way of each assessments of how lengthy the cellphone lasts throughout a typical day of use, and by noting how the cellphone performs throughout extra centered periods of video calls, media streaming and gaming. CNET additionally conducts a video playback take a look at, which is not all the time included in preliminary variations of the evaluation since it will probably take a full day to run.

We use benchmarking apps to measure the efficiency, alongside our personal anecdotal experiences utilizing the cellphone for our evaluation. We’ll additionally examine how the cellphone seems to be, feels and features to different iPhone fashions — as an illustration evaluating the iPhone 14 Plus with a 6.7-inch display screen towards the equally sized iPhone 14 Pro Max.

We additionally consider whether or not a more recent model consists of sufficient options to make it worth upgrading from older models.

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