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Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: The favourite child

Apple iPhone 12 Mini is more reminiscent of the iPhone 12 with minor changes. But is it the right choice for you? Let’s find out in this review.

Devesh Arora Devesh Arora @aroradevesh
New Delhi Updated on: December 30, 2020 1:12 IST
iPhone 12 Mini is available in five colours, just like the

iPhone 12 Mini is available in five colours, just like the iPhone 12.

Apple has launched four new iPhones this year and just like every year, the company has managed to bring that temptation to upgrade. However, this year it's something different. The company decided to launch a smaller mini version this year, which may just be the thing many people are looking for. 

Many people still love the small compact smartphones that used to be the norm just a couple of years ago, combined with the lack of compact flagships in the market, really opens up the market. The iPhone 12 Mini like the other 12 series offers a new design, the world’s first 5nm processor, 5G, Magsafe and more. 

Apple iPhone 12 Mini is more reminiscent of the iPhone 12 with minor changes. But is it the right choice for you? Let’s find out in this review:

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Design

With the iPhone 12 series, Apple has brought back the boxy design from the iPhone 4 and 5 days. This nostalgic design combined with a full-screen display is something out of the dreams for most of the old users. The iPhone 12 Mini takes it a step further, matching the dimensions of the iPhone SE but offering a full-screen display with FaceID. 

The only thing I don't like about the design on the iPhone 12 mini is the fact that the company decided to make the sides out of Aluminium instead of the stainless steel frame like the 12 Pro series of smartphones. Otherwise, this 5.4-inch smartphone is well balanced and offers a great in-hand feel.

It still holds everything that makes an iPhone an iPhone, along with 5G support and Magsafe.

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Display

The iPhone 12 Mini sports a 5.4-inch OLED XDR display. It's not the smallest iPhone display this year if you count the iPhone SE. Many people were sceptical of the display size at the launch, but after using the phone for quite a while, I think this is what I was missing from my life. Unless you have large hands, you will feel quite comfortable using the 12 mini, especially if you are upgrading from an iPhone 7 or 8. 

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Image Source : DEVESH ARORA / INDIATV

iPhone 12 Mini is the smallest iPhone with an OLED screen.

The display might feel relatively smaller when performing tasks like watching a YouTube video or a movie, but apart from that, it feels completely normal in day to day usage. I would also add if you are used to watching a lot of movies on your phone, you might wanna look forward to the iPhone 12 at least.

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The notch looks relatively bigger on the small screen.

While the iPhone 12 Mini still comes with a notch for all the FaceID tech, the notch looks quite big on the small display but I got used to it within a day.

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Performance

Apple iPhone 12 Mini is currently one of the most powerful smartphones out there. The Apple A14 Bionic chipset is much faster than the A13 and even faster than the flagship rivals from Qualcomm or MediaTek. The new A14 Bionic chipset is manufactured using the 5nm process making it considerably faster when compared to chipsets manufactured using an older process. This has an added benefit to make the chipset more power effective means more Instagram scrolling and less charging.

Keeping the technicals aside, the iPhone 12 Mini can easily handle any task you throw at it. Be it gaming or even editing 4K videos on the go, the phone would not show any signs of lag or stutter. The handset comes with 4GB of RAM and when that is paired with the A14 chipset and the iOS optimisations, the phone manages to keep dozens of apps open in the background. Even when the phone needs to reload an app, it manages to do that much faster than most of the other phones out there. 

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Cameras

Apple iPhone 12 Mini sports a dual-camera setup at the back along with a single front camera same as the iPhone 12. Just to get it out of the way, the dual rear setup consists of a 12-megapixel f/1.6 aperture lens and a 12-megapixel f/2.4 aperture ultra-wide sensor. The selfie camera is a 12-megapixel f/2.2 aperture lens. However, numbers aren’t the only thing that matters.

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Image Source : DEVESH ARORA / INDIATV

It sports a dual-camera setup at the back.

During our tests, the iPhone 12 Mini managed to click some great shots reliably. Generally, with android phones, you have to struggle sometimes to get the perfect shot, however with my time with the iPhone 12 mini, it takes shots reliably good. Under good lighting conditions, the phone clicks bright, vivid, colourful and sharp images that also boast a good dynamic range. The details are great along with color accuracy. Under low light conditions, the images before are a bit grainy sometimes. 

The iPhone 12 Mini is also great for videography. If you shoot a lot of videos using your smartphone, bagging an iPhone is necessary. During our tests, the phone was able to capture 4K videos at 60fps quite smoothly. The phone also manages to give stable shots without needing to attach a gimbal. 

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Battery

As we have established, the iPhone 12 Mini is no slouch. It's basically the best of what Apple can offer in a small package. The internal hardware is shared with the whole iPhone 12 range. The camera and other tech are shared with the much larger iPhone 12. This makes battery life a big concern. The smaller form factor means a smaller display and a smaller battery. This leads to the lowest runtime of the iPhone 12 range. 

With my daily usage with a mix of gaming, streaming music all day and scrolling through the internet quite a while. The smartphone manages to last around 20 hours. So basically charge the phone overnight and it will last a workday easily. It is compatible with the new MagSafe chargers so that's a bonus. However, it's worth mentioning that it's capped at 12W instead of 15W.

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Review: Verdict

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Image Source : INDIATV / DEVESH ARORA

iPhone 12 Mini is one of the best compact phones available.

In the past, if you wanted a smaller iPhone, you either had the option to pick up an older iPhone or a low-end SE model. The iPhone 12 Mini offers top-end hardware along with an OLED screen, fantastic cameras, and the A14 Bionic chipset. All this for a bit less battery life is something we can all go by without much concern. 

Starting at Rs 69,900, the iPhone 12 Mini is one of the best compact smartphones till date. You get everything that you expect from a much larger iPhone 12 without compromising much. Overall the iPhone 12 Mini is a great choice and the only option for a compact flagship smartphone.

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