No phone is perfect, but the iPhone 12 mini gets the closest of any phone I’ve ever owned. As for other phones, the iPhone 12’s are the only phones that could meet my needs. The iPhone 12 Pro Max is just way to big and heavy while the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro were good, but not good enough of an overall value. Let’s look at each feature in more detail.
For me the higher resolution screen makes up for the smaller size for shooting video, taking photographs, and trail mapping. I don’t do the design and video and photo editing on the phone as much as I did with past phones. Also, I don’t use my phone for playing games or watching video. This higher screen resolution in a smaller device is a positive tradeoff for less weight, another important feature for traveling and hiking.
The positive of a smaller battery is charge time. My experience is the mini reaches half charge and full charge 20-50% faster than the other iPhone 12’s. This fast charge time is critical for keeping up with Wi-Fi and cellular demands.
12 & Pro
12 & Pro
Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity are excellent with Wi-Fi 6 and 5G. My average speeds are double previous phones and I get connection in places where in the past I could not. For cellular I use 5G auto which switches between 5G and LTE based on 5G availability and battery usage. This gives me 5G when I need it and it’s available, while minimizing battery drain. Wi-Fi 6 is much faster than with previous phones, while maintaining connection reliability. When on Wi-Fi I now use only 5ghz when available. This fast and reliable connectivity is beneficial for video and music play.
The iPhone 12 mini has the best stereo speakers and microphones of any phone I’ve owned. All the iPhone 12’s have the same speaker and microphone arrangements and quality. A speaker and microphone reside in the notch and additional speakers and microphones are on the bottom edge, on either side of the Lightning connector. This provides great stereo separation and gives crystal clear voice in all orientations. This importance shows for video recording and playback.
mini and 12
12 Pro, Pro Max
Previous versions of the Apple leather case were beautiful and protected my phones through years of usage, drops, and weather conditions. This time I chose the leather case in California Poppy. The color is not yellow, orange, or gold. It’s spot on honey, identical to a beeswax candle. All Apple’s leather cases I’ve owned aged beautifully, were not bulky or heavy, and felt fantastic in the hand.
As a minimalist the feeling of using something to its fullest is satisfying. It’s my version of maximizing value. I never buy something new without replacing something old. The old I trade, sell, or give away, thus continuing to maximize its value, just with someone else.