Ever since I am using a smartphone, I have always been an Android-person. It’s just a year ago, which is almost five years of being a part of the tech world, I decided to switch to iOS. Well, no specific reason to move to an iPhone, it was just to get the hang of how iOS works. Also to know if iPhones are really addictive, as most iPhone users claim. A year later, I can barely use an Android smartphone for a very long time. Also Read - Apple testing foldable iPhone prototypes similar to the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip: Report
I have been using the Apple iPhone XR for over an year now and hence am pretty used to the 6.1-inch screen. It is because of this that when Apple sent me the iPhone 12 mini review unit I felt the screen to be too small. Two weeks later, I now feel the iPhone 12 mini’s 5.4 inch screen is compact and easy to use. What changed? The perspective. Also Read - Apple iPhone 13: Here's everything you must know about the next-gen iPhones
The tiny iPhone fits perfectly in my jeans pocket, the bigger iPhones obviously struggle to fit in. However, if you are a movie buff or a gamer, unlike me, I assume you may choose a bigger screen device over this one, just for the display size. Also Read - Apple's 2021 MacBook Pro to sport iPhone 12-like flat-edged design: Ming-Chi Kuo
Using the iPhone 12 mini is a breeze. I have been using the iPhone for over the past few weeks as my primary phone. In other words, I used the phone for all my day to day tasks such as sending out emails, chatting on WhatsApp, browning the internet as well as social media platforms, group video calls and so on. Apple’s latest A14 Bionic chipset could handle it all with ease. There were no lags, no shutters.
In this review I share my two weeks experience using Apple’s latest ‘budget’ iPhone 12 mini…
Apple iPhone 12 mini design
The iPhone 12 mini comes in several vibrant colour options including white, black, blue, green, and (product) red. This review features the blue colour option. I usually like my phone in black or white, but in this case I’m really impressed with the blue colour tone that Apple has used. The blue looks fancy and classy at the same time.
With the latest iPhone models, Apple has moved back to the flat-edge design, previously seen on the original iPhone SE and some of the other older models, from the curved design on the iPhone 11 series. In my opinion it’s refreshing to see the US-based tech giant opt for a new design language. The iPhone models launched in the past two to three years looked nearly the same, which consumers wanted Apple to change this year. And that’s exactly what the company did. The flat edge design of the iPhone 12 mini looks promising to me and the edges also seem somewhat polished. It doesn’t hurt the palm.
The precision-milled matte glass back attracts fingerprints but can also be easily wiped out. I preferred to use a back cover for it that came with the review unit. Overall, I feel the design of the iPhone 12 mini to be clean with the square shaped dual rear camera module at the left corner of the glass back. The Apple logo in silver sits in the middle.
Apple iPhone 12 mini screen
In my opinion, some will feel the 5.4 inches screen to be smaller while some may like it. At first, when I unboxed the phone I found the phone to be too tiny to use as my primary device. But, in a few days my opinion changed and now I feel the size of the iPhone 12 mini is just perfect. The phone is also extremely light weight but has the tendency to slip off the hands. So, ensure to use it with a cover because if you drop it, your hard earned Rs 69,900 (64GB model) is at risk.
The screen of the iPhone 12 mini looks vibrant in all lighting conditions. Even under Delhi’s sunlight, the screen of the iPhone looks bright enough with sharp viewing angles. In indoors, just 50 percent of brightness level feels adequate for me. I have watched several web series on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video and YouTube videos and really like the picture quality that the OLED display provides. The iPhone also offers great viewing angles.
Apple iPhone 12 mini camera
The camera is definitely one of the best aspects about the iPhone 12 mini. It comes with a dual 12-megapixel camera system at the back panel and a single 12-megapixel sensor on the front. Last Saturday I went out with the iPhone to Delhi’s Sunder Nursery to test the camera and was absolutely astounded by the pictures the iPhone 12 mini captured. The device also manages to shoot pretty stable videos even when in motion.
In daylight, the iPhone 12 mini clicks stunning pictures with amazing details and colours. Each and every photo looked sharp and full of details. If you see the pink rose in the camera samples the edges of the petals look sharp and the flower looks full of details. In the camera samples you can see how accurately the phone captures the colours.
If you now check the photo of the monument, the tiles and the bricks are clearly visible and look distinct, which is really impressive. Well, it’s not just the details but the black and the red colour also looks just as the original. The iPhone 12 mini also manages to capture amazing portrait shots with the background properly blurred out and edges sharpened.
Well, not just in daylight, the iPhone 12 mini’s camera also impressed me in low-light. Even in less light the phone clicks detailed pictures with accurate colours. In the camera sample below you can see the picture gets the details as well as the colours just right, the text looks spot-on and doesn’t look washed out anywhere.
The front camera of the iPhone 12 mini also manages to impress me a lot. The phone is capable of capturing selfies with a good amount of details and accurate colours. It doesn’t over expose the selfies at any given point. The selfie portraits also stand out. The portrait shots get the background properly blurred out and edges sharpened. The details are also intact.
Apple iPhone 12 mini performance
It’s a breeze to use this iPhone. The A14 Bionic chipset manages to handle multitasking extremely well. I used the phone as my primary device for over two weeks now and at no point did I feel the phone to be laggy. I played games like subway surfer and Temple Run, also Asphalt 9 and all of them ran pretty smoothly. The graphics also look flawless on the OLED display. This means, the gamers are going to like this iPhone, but if a big screen is your requirement, there are other options in that case.
One area where I feel the iPhone 12 mini could have been slightly better is the battery. Every time I stepped out I had to carry a power bank with me. In my usage, the phone lasted nearly around nine to 10 hours a day on a single charge. If you watch videos more expect less juice. The iPhone also took time to charge up completely. So, you need to be patient when it comes to the battery and the charging bit, be it the usual lightning cable or the MagSafe wireless charger.
Should you buy the Apple iPhone 12 mini?
After spending a good two weeks with the iPhone 12 mini, I feel it’s a great overall package. It has the perfect design with a great pair of cameras. The iPhone also manages to handle all your daily tasks easily without any stutters at any given point of time. So, if you are looking to switch from one of those old iPhones, say the iPhone SE, the iPhone 12 mini feels like a good option to consider at the price tag of Rs 69,900. While, if you require a bigger screen than the iPhone 12 mini there’s the iPhone 12.