Apple has made its annual updates to its all-conquering smartphone range, introducing the new iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro devices. So, what’s new with the class of 2022-2023? Here’s a guide to the main differences so you know whether or not it’s worth going Pro.
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Design
It’s pretty much as you were for the standard iPhone 14, as the outward design is almost identical to the iPhone 13. The dimensions are nearly the same although Apple has managed to shave off 2g of weight on the new model. This means you get dimensions of 146.7mm x 71.5mm x 7.8mm, weighing in at 172g. The new model is just the slightest bit thicker, too. You might expect most cases to fit, but Apple appears to have slightly shifted the location of the side and volume buttons, so you may run into problems when using a case made for the iPhone 13 on an iPhone 14.
5.78 inches (146.7mm)
2.82 inches (71.5mm)
0.31 inch (7.80-mm)
6.07 ounces (172 grams)
iPhone 14 Plus
6.33 inches (160.8 mm)
3.07 inches (78.1 mm)
0.31 inch (7.80 mm)
7.16 ounces (203 grams)
iPhone 14 Pro
5.81 inches (147.5mm)
2.81 inches (71.5mm)
0.31 inch (7.85-mm)
7.27 ounces (206 grams)
iPhone 14 Pro Max
6.33 inches (160.7 mm)
3.05 inches (77.6 mm)
0.31 inch (7.85 mm)
8.47 ounces (240 grams)
The iPhone 14 retains the square edges that we’ve seen on the previous two generations, with a 6.1 inch Super Retina XDR display on the front, replete with the infamous notch. The panel features a ceramic shield covering to protect it, while the chassis is built from aerospace-grade aluminium.
The dual camera system on the rear features the same diagonal placement as with the iPhone 13, and the glass back panel allows for wireless charging from MagSafe or Qi compatible chargers. Both phones have an IP68 water and dust resistance rating that ensures even a quick dip shouldn’t be able to stop the iPhone in its tracks. Basically, if you’ve held an iPhone 13 then you’ve pretty much held an iPhone 14, at least in terms of aesthetics.
It’s a similar story with the iPhone 14 Pro, which again retains much of the design language from its predecessor. It’s the tiniest bit taller, narrower, and thicker, and heavier, but not so you’d notice.
There are 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR displays (although the Pro has additional features we discuss below), Ceramic Shield, IP68 rating, but the Pro chassis is made from a superior surgical grade stainless steel as opposed to the aluminum on the standard model, which adds some extra weight.
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Display
As mentioned above, both the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro come with 6.1-inch or 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED displays, although the Pros models get the more power-efficient and controllable LTPO versions. This year though, there are some other big differences. As with the iPhone 13 models, ProMotion is only on the Pro models–it allows for variable refresh rates up to 120Hz. The standard models always run at 60Hz. Apple has also introduced an Always-On display with the iPhone 14 Pro, so you can see incoming notifications, the time, and other widgets without having to wake the phone.
Perhaps the biggest change is with the “notch.” On the iPhone 14 you have the standard black block with cameras and sensors that has been a feature of iPhones for years now, but the iPhone 14 Pro features the new Dynamic Island. This, as the name suggests, detaches the notch from the edge of the display and creates a pill-shaped island at the top of the screen. Apple has added some clever design to this so that the shape changes to accommodate various notifications, quick controls for apps running in the background, or is just incorporated into system messages all while disguising the fact that the camera cutouts are even there.
Obviously, the island will still be visible when watching movies or other video content on the iPhone 14 Pro, but for all other instances it now becomes a feature rather than an ugly encumbrance.
In terms of brightness, the iPhone 14 tops out at 800 nits in typical use and 1,200 peak brightness when viewing HDR content. The Pro models beat this with respective scores of 1,000 and 1,600 nits, and can jump all the way up to 2,000 nits in bright light outdoors.
Other than that, both boast 2,000,000:1 contrast ratios, True Tone, Wide color (P3), Haptic Touch, and similar 460 ppi resolution. If the 6.1-inch screen isn’t big enough, then Pro users can select the 6.7 inch version that is the iPhone 14 Pro Max. This year standard iPhone users get the same option thanks to the introduction of the iPhone 14 Plus. It’s essentially the same phone, just in a larger size.
Max brightness (SDR)
Max brightness (HDR)
True Tone, Wide color
iPhone 14 Pro/Pro Max
1,000 nits (2,000 outdoors)
True Tone, Wide color, Dynamic Island, Always-on-display
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Processor
While on paper it looks like the iPhone 14 has the same chip as its predecessor, the iPhone 13, that isn’t quite true. Instead, Apple has opted to use the slightly tweaked version of the A15 that appeared in the iPhone 13 Pro devices. It has five GPU cores instead of four, providing significantly better graphics performance.
The iPhone 14 Pro models have the new A16 chip. It has a similar six-core CPU, five-core GPU, and 16-core Neural Engine, but is made on a 4nm manufacturing process that improves power efficiency and allows the chip to run a bit faster. It also uses LPDDR5 memory instead of LPDDR4x, which delivers up to 50% more memory bandwidth. The image signal processor and display engine are new, which enable the always-on display and new camera capabilities of the Pro models.
In terms of raw performance, you can expect the iPhone 14 Pro models to be a bit faster than the standard iPhone 14–on the order of around 10% or so.
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Cameras
Camera systems have seen some decent upgrades across the entire iPhone 14 range this year. In the standard models you’ll find a new 12MP f/1.5 main camera, which appears to be the same as you would find in the iPhone 13 Pro.
Apple has also introduced a new image processing pipeline it calls “Photonic Engine” that combines uncompressed images to make the best possible final composite picture, especially in low light. Cinematic Mode gets an upgrade from 1080p/30fps on the iPhone 13 to 4K/30fps on the iPhone 14, plus there’s the brand new Action Mode that uses advanced stabilization techniques to make video footage look smooth, even if you’re running along while recording.
The front-facing cameras on both the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro are still 12MP, but have a wider f/1.9 aperture with autofocus, for improved selfies and video calls.
The iPhone 14 Pro also gets all of these, but star of the show is the 48MP f/1.78 main camera that is a serious upgrade to the 12MP unit replaces. This features a sensor 65% bigger than that on the iPhone 13 Pro. It takes 12MP images by combing four pixels into one, but you can take full 48MP images in ProRAW mode. It also enables a new 2x telephoto mode in addition to the 3x mode provided by the separate telephoto camera. The 12MP f/2.2 Ultra Wide camera has a larger sensor that captures more light, too. Macro photos and video remain a Pro model exclusive.
And of course, the iPhone 14 Pro gets the Photonic Engine image processing, 4K Cinematic Mode, and Action Mode as well.
The iPhone 14 has a great range of options for most people’ photography and videography needs, but in this area the Pro really does mean Pro.
iPhone 14 / Plus
iPhone 14 Pro / Max
Main camera (wide)
12MP f/1.5 26mm
larger 48MP “quad pixel” f/1.78 24mm
12MP f/2.4 13mm
larger 12MP f/2.2 13mm
12MP f/2.8 77mm
12MP f/1.9 with autofocus
12MP f/1.9 with autofocus
Photonic Engine, 4K Cinematic Mode, Action Mode
Photonic Engine, 4K Cinematic Mode, Action Mode, 2x telephoto, ProRAW, ProRes video, macro photos and video, Night mode portraits
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Battery Life
Both devices offer what Apple calls “all-day battery life.” According to Apple’s specs, the iPhone 14 can manage 20 hours of video playback from a single charge, a one-hour improvement over the iPhone 13. The iPhone 14 Pro is rated for 23 hours, also up one hour from the iPhone 13 Pro.
The iPhone 14 Plus is rated for up to 26 hours of video playback, while the iPhone 14 Pro Max is rated for up to 29 hours.
You’re looking at some really excellent battery life no matter which phone you choose, but the Pro models should be a little better thanks to the more advanced and power-efficient display and A16 processor.
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Price
Needless to say, the Pro suffix comes with a cost. Here’s how the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models compare:
iPhone 14 vs iPhone 14 Pro: Which one should you buy?
The iPhone 14 is a hugely capable smartphone that will deliver on the most important features that most users want. It has great cameras, a powerful processor, good battery life and plenty of bells and whistles that will keep you happy for the next couple of years. This is the sensible choice for most of us, particularly when you factor in the $200/£250 difference between standard and Pro models with the same storage capacity.
But if you want cutting edge silicon, arguably the most advanced photo and video setup on any smartphone around, not to mention ProMotion, the Dynamic Island, and an Always-On Display, then the iPhone 14 Pro is a seriously impressive device.
Martyn has been involved with tech ever since the arrival of his ZX Spectrum back in the early 80s. He covers iOS, Android, Windows and macOS, writing tutorials, buying guides and reviews for Macworld and its sister site Tech Advisor.