The iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro (as well as the iPhone 11 Pro Max) have a lot in common with their cameras, but there are distinct differences. We break down all the differentiators as well as show off some sample photography.
The best iPhone this year is the iPhone 11 Pro, but it’s mostly because it has a full package of slightly better antennas, a better battery, a higher-quality OLED display, that added telephoto camera and an 18-watt charger in the box. (That charger should have been included with the iPhone 11 too.) But in most instances, except for that camera, I’m not sure I’d need it. I felt the same way last year when I compared the iPhone XR with the iPhone XS.
The iPhone 11 and the iPhone 11 Pro, which are launching in stores Friday, share many characteristics with the iPhone XS and the iPhone XR, which Apple introduced last year. They come in the same screen sizes, can recognize your face through Face ID just like the iPhone X phones before it, and have the same notch cutout near the top of the screen for the selfie camera and facial-recognition sensors.
But they also improve on the iPhone in the areas that matter most: namely when it comes to camera quality and battery life. That’s as important as ever for Apple, which has been grappling with slowing iPhone sales as smartphone shipments, in general, have been declining.
Here’s a closer look at what it’s been like to use the iPhone 11 and the iPhone 11 Pro over the past
If you’re trying to tell the difference between last year’s iPhone and the iPhone 11 or the iPhone 11 Pro, the camera will be a dead giveaway.
The iPhone is getting a triple-lens camera for the first time with the iPhone 11 Pro and the 11 Pro Max, the Pro’s larger sibling that comes with a 6.5-inch display. And the less expensive iPhone 11 comes with a dual camera, an important characteristic that distinguishes it from last year’s iPhone XR.
All three phones include a 12-megapixel ultrawide-angle camera with a 120-degree field of view and a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens. That ultrawide-angle camera makes it possible to capture more of the scene in a single shot — meaning you should no longer have to tell everyone to squeeze in tight to fit in the frame when taking group shots.
This is by no means a feature that’s entirely new to smartphones; Samsung’s Galaxy S10 and the OnePlus 7 Pro already offer this too.
With the iPhone 11, you can rest assured that you won’t be left stranded in search of a power outlet. I used the iPhone 11 Pro for roughly a day and a half — about 32 hours — without charging it and still had about 15% of its battery left.
I’d usually consider that to be normal; after all, most of the phones I test can last for about a day and a half on a single charge. But I accidentally left the phone’s screen at maximum brightness for about two hours after a video shoot — while also setting the display to never time out — and was still able to get regular battery life. (This was while using the regular Pro; you can probably expect to get slightly longer battery life out of the larger Pro Max.)
iPhone 11 vs iPhone 11 Pro vs Note 10+ vs P30 Pro vs OnePlus 7 Pro Charge Test
Battery life will always vary depending on how you use your phone. During this testing period, I used these phones for checking email, browsing social media, taking photos, streaming music (roughly one to two hours) and video (roughly 20 minutes), and checking my job’s Slack channel. If you use your phone for similar tasks, you can probably expect battery results like this.
The new iPhones also finally come with an 18-watt charger for juicing up your device more quickly — a much-requested upgrade from the smaller charging brick that older iPhones came with.