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iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus officially revealed at Apple event — the new features are volcanic

iPhone 14
(Image credit: Apple)

It's Apple Event time! The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus got unveiled at Apple's "Far Out" September 2022 livestream today alongside the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. We'll be zeroing in on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus in this article, the two entry-level tiers of the next-generation iPhone line.

Interested in the iPhone 14? Don't forget to check out the best expected iPhone 14 trade-in deals (wouldn't it be nice to get the new device for less than $200?). Plus, check out our live blog on the Apple Event, which dives into a play-by-play on the new AirPods Pro 2, Apple Watch Series 8, Watch SE and Watch Ultra.

The iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus highlights

  • The new 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus has the best battery life ever in an iPhone. 
  • No major changes externally, but internally, there are updates that improve thermals.
  • The iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus still sports the A15 Bionic chip, but it has an updated GPU.
  • iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus has a new 12MP main camera with a larger sensor and larger pixel count.
  • The iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus' wide camera sport a 49% improvement for low-light photos. Night Mode exposure is twice as fast.
  • The selfie camera has autofocus for the first time. It has a 38% improvement with low-light performance.
  • There are improvements to video, too. There's an advanced stabilization mode called "Action Mode." No gimbal needed!
  • Improvements to eSIM, which eliminates the need to have a physical SIM card. You can have multiple phone plans with eSIM setup.
  • No more SIM tray on the iPhone 14.
  • iPhone 14 now has crash detection. It auto-notifies emergency services and contacts if you're in an scary situation.
  • Emergency SOS via satellite, thanks to new iPhone 14 antennas. It's included free for two years.

iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus specs and design at a glance

The rumors were spot on! Apple eliminated the mini from the iPhone series in favor of the iPhone 14 Plus, a new tier with a 6.7-inch display. 

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus (Image credit: Apple)

The 6.1-inch iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus come with features that still heavily mirror the iPhone 13. Both models have the same design as its predecessor, including the ceramic-shield display and aerospace-aluminum chassis. It still contains a A15 Bionic chipset with a faster five-core GPU that's 18% zippier (it's worth noting that the Pro models have the new-gen A16 Bionic chip). 

Although the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus aren't updated externally compared to the iPhone 13, Apple says that there's a new internal design that improves the iOS devices' thermals. As such, you can dive into heavy mobile gaming without dealing with a chassis that gets too warm.

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus (Image credit: Future)

Another minor design change is the elimination of the SIM tray. Apple is pushing eSIM, allowing users to ditch physical SIM cards and sign up for multiple phone plans simultaneously.

iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus cameras

The aforementioned features may sound a little too lukewarm for you, but the following new perks are volcanic. The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus have better cameras that deliver a 49% improvement to low-light photos. Night Mode exposure is twice as fast. 

Both iPhone 14 tiers come with an updated 12MP main camera that features a larger sensor and pixels (1.9 microns). It also has a faster f/1.5 aperture and better sensor-shift OIS. The latter begets better motion freezing.

The iPhone 14 models also come with a new selfie camera with a faster f/1.9 aperture for a 38% improvement with low-light photos and videos. For the first time, the front-facing (selfie) camera has auto-focus, allowing users to focus on subjects clearly at multiple distances. Apple also updated its Deep Fusion process, which essentially means that your photos should include better, sharper details and brighter colors. 

iPhone 14 new camera

iPhone 14 new camera (Image credit: Apple)

The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus also have better video capture thanks to its updated stabilization mode, which means both phones will deliver better videos when it comes to "on-the-move" moments. Thanks to the new Action Mode, activity-filled videos should appear smoother — as if you're holding a gimbal. 

Aside from the cameras, the most exciting aspect of the iPhone 14 announcement is the fact that the new 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus has the best battery life ever in an iPhone. This means that its runtime will even exceed the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.

iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus satellite connectivity and crash detection

Apple has focused on emergency services with the iPhone 14, adding crash detection  (also on the new Apple Watch Series 8) to its popular iOS device. The models have a new high-dynamic range gyroscope and dual-core accelerometer that can detect up to 256 Gs, which will trigger calls to your emergency contact list and emergency-service providers.

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus

Satellite connectivity (Image credit: Future)

The iPhone 14 is also adding a satellite connectivity feature, allowing users to connect to emergency entities in the event of a dire situation. It's called "Emergency SOS via satellite." After all, sometimes we end up in regions that cell towers cannot reach (e.g. winding back roads and mountain peaks), so this feature lets you connect to satellites so that you can receive emergency help. As long as you are outside and have a clear view of the sky, you can send texts in an emergency situation.

Interestingly, with Emergency SOS via satellite, there are pre-programmed responses, making it easier for users to communicate with emergency-service providers quickly if they're in precarious positions.

Emergency SOS via satellite

Emergency SOS via satellite (Image credit: Apple)

With the purchase of iPhone 14, Emergency SOS via satellite is included free for two years. It launches in November, starting with the U.S. and Canada.

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus release date and price

The iPhone 14 costs $799 while the iPhone 14 Plus has an $899 price tag.

The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus pre-orders launch on Sept. 9. The iPhone 14 will be available on Sept. 16. The iPhone 14 Plus will be available later on Oct. 7.

The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus come in five new colors: Midnight, Starlight, Blue, Purple and Product(RED).

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!