Can the best be better? The answer – for Apple – is yes.
Not only does it trump all the iPhones currently in the market, the latest iPhone 14 Pro Max is an absolute joy to use. Powered by what is the fastest and most efficient chip ever in a smartphone (the A16 Bionic), it runs smoother, takes better pictures and videos, boasts a world-class display, has a longer battery life and offers some exciting new features that make this iteration feels new, even though it looks pretty much the same as its predecessor.
Here are what iPhone 14 Pro Max owners can expect from their new favourite device:
Not much has changed in Pro Max’s already good-looking exterior and superior build quality. Like the iPhone 13 Pro Max, it features a beautiful surgical-grade stainless steel, textured matte glass design and a tough Ceramic Shield front. The phone also has the same flat side edges and rounded corners. There are, however, some slight differences between the two. As the rear camera module is a tiny bit larger with the upgrade, the 14 Pro Max is slightly heavier (by 0.01 ounce) and thicker (by 0.01 inch) than the generation past. Once turned on, you’ll also notice that the notch at the top of the screen is now a pill-shaped cut-out called the Dynamic Island. And beyond the familiar space black, silver and gold, there is a luscious new shade for the 6.7-inch model in deep purple as part of the 14 line-up.
What Apple has done to the notch that houses the camera mechanism is so clever. Previously just a static, dead space at the top of the screen, the updated notch – which is exclusive to the 14 Pro models – is now a floating, pill-shaped, shape-shifting cutout called the “Dynamic Island”. A nifty function that show alerts, notifications and activities in real time – such as music, directions, timers and Face ID animations, it acts like a mini dashboard, and can be expanded with a simple tap-and-hold for more information on an app you’re running without impeding contents on the screen. For instance, if you’re playing music, the track will be displayed, and you can pause, play the following or the previous song, and access Airplay by long-pressing.
Apple has given the iPhone 14 Pro Max a big boost to its camera system, and if you’re a photography enthusiast, you’re going to see and feel the difference. With the new Photonic Engine, which uses the company’s Deep Fusion tech in the imaging process, the new-gen camera captures more detail – colours, textures and all that jazz – in mid- to low-light conditions. This is coupled with a 48MP main camera (the first in an iPhone), which offers 2x telephoto zoom. For most photos, the new sensor combines every four pixels in a quad pixel for better light optimisation, so improvements might not be immediately apparent in good lighting. But there is now the option to shoot with all 48 million pixels in ProRaw mode, giving photographers and filmmakers more flexibility. Also noteworthy is the new Action mode, which adjusts to movements and vibrations to provide greater stability when shooting videos in motion.
Apple Watch’s Always-On display finally comes to the 14 Pros. This means that you can see your wallpaper, widgets, time, date, as well as live activities in a low-light mode when the phone is locked. To conserve power, the smart always-on display turns off if you put the phone upside down on a table, in your pocket, or when you, if you’re wearing a paired Apple Watch, leaves the room. The Super Retina XDR display with ProMotion also looks fantastic on graphics-heavy games and Netflix, and offers the highest outdoor peak brightness in a smartphone: up to 2000 nits, which is twice as bright as iPhone 13 Pro for even better visibility.
Crash Detection and Emergency SOS
We hope you’ll never tap into these safety capabilities, but the new Crash Detection and Emergency SOS features in the iPhone 14 lineup can help you if you’re in a car accident or lost in a place without cellular or Wi-Fi coverage.
Crash Detection utilises the phone’s improved accelerometer, gyroscope, microphone and GPS to detect high G-forces, cabin pressure change, speed changes and loud noises to identify a crash. Should a crash happen, the iPhone 14 will automatically dial emergency services if you’re unconscious or unable to reach your device.
Emergency SOS, on the other hand, puts you in contact with emergency services via satellite when you’re off the grid and in trouble. It does this by retrieving information from you through a questionnaire and follow-up messages, as well as instructing you where to aim the iPhone for the best possible connection with satellites in sight. These details are then relayed to Apple-trained specialists who will call for help on your behalf.
The iPhone 14 Pro Max is now available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB storage capacities, and can be purchased online here, in the Apple Store app, at Apple Store locations, and through Apple Authorised Resellers and select carriers.