iPhone 14 and AirPods 2 pre-orders are live: here's your guide
Apple has also launched the AirPods Pro 2 pre-orders at 8am ET / 5am PT (after a slight delay from the Apple Store)
⬇️ iPhone 14 pre-order links below this intro.
Your friendly neighborhood Swider-Man here in NYC 🕸️,
Thanks to you and your support of The Shortcut, I got to appear on Sirius XM radio channel Shade 45 yesterday to talk iPhones (links to order below), Samsung phones, and PS5 restocks. Thanks for allowing me to be your “tech expert.” 🙏
The Apple Store is back up as of 8am ET, so you can order the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro (you may need to refresh the site for several minutes to get it to work). New iPhones never “sell out,” but shipment dates for popular colors and storage sizes will slip further into the future. So, if you want that purple iPhone Pro Max with 256GB of storage right on Friday, September 16 and not in October, it’s wise to order today.
Pro tip: You can do an in-store pick-up if the shipment date starts to slip. I prefer this because I bypass slow package deliveries this way and get my iPhones at 7:30am ET (earliest time at Manhattan’s flagship Apple Store) to begin my review process ASAP.
iPhone 14 pre-order locations
My iPhone 14 review plan
I’ll be reviewing all four phones – the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max – as soon as I get my hands on the new devices, just like I did for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Z Flip 4.
I have some fun plans to test out the phones and the Apple Watch 8 and Watch SE next week – saving the Apple Watch Ultra (coming Friday, September 23) and iPhone 14 Plus (coming Friday, October 7) for separate reviews when they hit stores.
iPhone 14 trade-in offers
Apple is offering solid trade-in deals for older iPhones (up to $720 in value) and I’m a fan of the iPhone Upgrade plan (comes with AppleCare+). But Apple has mediocre trade-in offers for Samsung phones (and only accepts non-foldables) and OK offers for Google Pixel phones. You can only trade in one phone and not multiple devices (so no phones + tablets + watches for a combined credit), a deal Samsung has been running for the last two years that I really like (reduces e-waste at home).
AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile will offer you up to $1,000 off – but only if you’re on an eligible unlimited plan and not buying at full retail. Verizon has an exclusive with its new One Unlimited Plan – it’s the only US carrier to include the Apple One bundle (Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade and iCloud+).
Your iPhone 14 questions answered
❓ I’ll answer your questions here if you send them to me in the comments, in email replies, on Twitter or in direct messages. Get at me, and I’ll help out as much as I can.
📱 Four new iPhones available to pre-order today
🗓️ Release date is Friday, September 16 for three of the new iPhones
⏲️ The iPhone 14 Plus will launch on Friday, October 7
🙅♂️ No iPhone 14 Mini – the 12 Mini and 13 Mini didn’t sell
🔼 The iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max get the biggest & best upgrades
🏝️ The Pro-exclusive “Dynamic Island” is a pill-shaped UI surrounding the TrueDepth camera cutout in the display
I’ll be interested in seeing if Android manufacturers copy this idea
📸 Pro-exclusive 48MP camera (improved 12MP on the non-Pro iPhones)
🔭 Pro-exclusive telephoto adds 2x zoom and 3x zoom
🤳 All phones have a better 12MP TrueDepth camera sensor with 38% better in lowlight and autofocus for the first time
🏃♂️ Turn on Action Mode in the camera app to dramatically increase stabilization
🗄️ Get 256GB of storage if you plan to take video and RAW photos
📶 eSIM-only, meaning no more SIM cards (it’s good and bad)
⚙️ A15 Bionic chip for the iPhone 14 series (same as iPhone 13)
⚙️ A16 Bionic for iPhone 14 Pro series (4nm chipset)
💰 No price increase year-over-year in the US
🚗 Crash detection (amazing tech)
📡 Emergency SOS via Satellites (also life-saving tech)
🌈 iPhone 14 colors: Midnight, Purple, Starlight, Product Red
🌈 iPhone 14 Pro colors: Space Black, Silver, Gold, Deep Purple
🆚 Has the iPhone 14 really changed [from the 13]?
Yes, even the standard iPhone 14 sees some significant camera upgrades, though the best perks have been saved for the iPhone 14 Pro Max. The 14 and 14 Plus have a much better 12MP main camera with a larger sensor, larger 1.9-micron pixels and faster f/1.5 aperture. Apple says photos will see a 49% improvement in low-light. Likewise, the 12MP TrueDepth selfie camera has a much faster f/1.9 aperture (iPhone 13 series was f/2.2) and auto-focus for the first time in all iPhone 14 phones. Can’t wait to test out “Action mode” for strong, gimbal-free stabilization.
There’s no iPhone 14 Mini. Apple is instead offering a larger iPhone 14 with a 6.7-inch screen, matching the iPhone 14 Pro Max display size. It’s a nice compromise if you don’t want all of the “Pro” bells and whistles.
🏝️ What do you think of the Dynamic Island?
This is Apple’s creative way to hide the camera cutout (and replace the full-on notch) with a black UI for notifications at the top of the display. This was the No. 2 question I got from people – often followed by their opinion: some are mad that a cutout still exists in 2022, while others love the idea of important masking the screen cutout.
I’d love to have a seamless display, too, but I’d rather have the best possible selfie camera and a secure TrueDepth camera for things like Face ID. Yes, some Android phones have gotten rid of their screen cutouts, but at what cost? Softer selfie photos and less secure Face ID unlock methods? No thanks.
💳 eSIM means no SIM card tray? Is that good/bad?
I have mixed feelings on eSIM-only on US iPhone 14 phones. Apple pitched this as a security feature – and I agree. A thief won’t be able to jack your phone and easily swap out the SIM card since there’s no physical SIM card tray. It would be great to live in a world where your iPhone becomes worthless if it’s ever stolen from you.
However, as a former frequent traveler who wants to go international again for the first time in 2+ years, I may run into issues. When visiting places like Morocco and Egypt, the first thing I do is get a local SIM card at the airport. The local speeds are fast and the rates are cheap (US carriers’ international data plans add-ons tend to be a rip-off). I’m not sure all countries will be ready for this – at least not right away. It’ll be fine eventually, but it’ll probably be like ripping off a bandaid for the next two years.
🆚 Any difference between 14 vs Plus; Pro vs Pro Max?
There aren’t dramatic differences this year (like there were between the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max cameras two years ago). So you’re safe going with either size, as long as you take into account that the smaller versions will have a slightly smaller battery capacity and, obviously, a smaller screen.
🆚 What’s the difference between iPhone 14 and 14 Pro?
The 48MP camera is the reason to go Pro. It also has a faster chipset (the A16 Bionic), the Dynamic Island UI at the top, and better ProMotion display.
If you can’t afford a new iPhone, know that Apple will launch iOS 16 on September 13. That’ll give your old iPhone some fresh [software] paint.
✏️ Keep the questions coming!
Stay tuned for full reviews of each new iPhone, Apple AirPods 2 and each new Apple Watch. Thanks for staying subscribed 💝