We recently covered the news that the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro use identically-sized batteries (2,815mAh)—almost 10 percent smaller than the previous generation iPhone 11. However, Apple’s new 5nm A14 Bionic chip is supposed to be more efficient with power, or so it appeared. New battery life tests done by the folks over at Phone Arena have revealed some startling figures—particularly if you’re a heavy mobile gamer.
When running the phones through 3D gaming tests, the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro only lasted a mere three hours and one minute. Describing the results as “shockingly bad”, testers used the new iPhones to play a range of popular mobile titles, including Call of Duty Mobile and Minecraft. During the test, the iPhones warmed up substantially, and the battery began “melting incredibly quickly”.
The heating issue disappeared the moment the testers stopped running any games, with the testers summarising that the A14 Bionic chip doesn’t run 3D games well (“there is something seriously wrong”). If you’re looking for a new, powerful device for gaming (and you want to stay in the Apple ecosystem), you might want to grab the iPhone 11 Pro instead—for now.
It isn’t all bad, though. The iPhone 12 Pro does pretty well in browsing tests, lasting 12 hours and 35 minutes, which is an improvement of four hours over the iPhone 11 Pro. Meanwhile, Android competitors like the Google Pixel 5 have more-or-less identical figures, which is testament to the efficiency of the A14 Bionic chip under the hood.
What about YouTube? The iPhone 12 and 12 Pro came up with some decent results, and the iPhone 12 Pro outlasted the iPhone 11 Pro by 21 minutes on a single charge. However, the iPhone 12 was bested by its predecessor, the iPhone 11. Despite the fact that the standard iPhone 12 and 12 Pro sport identical displays and identical chipsets (and identical batteries, as mentioned earlier), the iPhone 11 uses a lower resolution display, which resulted in better battery life here for the older base model iPhone compared to the new iPhone 12 (and 12 Pro).
So, disappointed? That makes two of us. Nowadays, smartphones in general are regarded as media consumption devices, and many users consume plenty of media on their mobile devices on a daily/hourly basis. The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12, with some startlingly poor battery test figures, fall way short in this regard.
If you don’t game on your phone a lot, or you don’t intend to do much Netflix-ing or YouTube-ing, perhaps you won’t mind—battery life when browsing is up to par, after all. Or, you can wait and see if Apple pushes an update to solve the issue.
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