While the iPhone 14 Pro might look nearly identical to its predecessor, it brings software and hardware improvements including the new Dynamic Island, a bigger battery, and faster cameras, that continue to make the Pro series one of the best premium smartphones for less than $1000.

Key Features

  • Dynamic Island
  • Always-On display
  • ProMotion technology with adaptive refresh rates up to 120Hz
  • 48MP Main Camera

  • Brand: Apple
  • Display: 6.1″
  • RAM: 6 GB
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
  • Battery: Li-Ion 3200 mAh
  • Operating System: iOS 16+
  • Front camera: 12 MP, f/1.9, 23mm (wide)
  • Rear cameras: Wide, Telephoto, Ultrawide
  • Dimensions: 5.81 x 2.81 x 0.31 in
  • Colors: Space Black, Silver, Gold, Deep Purple
  • Display type: Super Retina XDR
  • Weight: 206 g (7.27 oz)
  • Charging: Lightning
  • IP Rating: IP68 (6 meters up to 30 minutes)
  • Price: $999

  • More performance than you’ll ever need
  • Impressive video & photo
  • Display gets extremely bright outdoors
  • Main camera gets its first MP bump in a long time
  • All-day battery life
  • Cinematic mode supports 4k 24 fps on all cameras now

  • No physical sim
  • Limited manual camera controls
  • Still uses lightning port
  • 3x Camera remains unchanged

Thinking about upgrading to Apple’s newest “Pro” iPhone? The iPhone 14 Pro looks nearly identical to last year’s 13 Pro, which isn’t surprising, however, it does have a few new and unique features including Dynamic Island, an optional always-on display, as well as upgraded cameras that are better in low light, offer better stabilization, and higher detail.

At $999, the iPhone 14 Pro is very much a premium device, however, it is arguably the best $1000 phone you can buy for its speed, specs, and camera performance. While its overall user experience will largely feel the same as the iPhone 13 Pro and even older non-Pro iPhones, those who prioritize having the best camera and display on a phone will not be disappointed with the iPhone 14 Pro—but there are a few considerations to keep in mind.

iPhone 14 Pro - Angle View

My “Upgrade”

Since first switching from Android with the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 to an iPhone 11 in 2019, I have been upgrading to the newest iPhone every year. I quickly fell in love with the size and value of the Mini series and have owned both the 12 Mini and the 13 Mini, which I then upgraded this year to the iPhone 14 Pro. I would have loved to stay with the $699 Mini, but was heartbroken to learn that it would be discontinued indefinitely. With the iPhone 14 retailing for $799, the 14 Plus for $899, the 14 Pro for $999, and the 14 Pro Max for $1099, I personally felt that the 6.1″ Pro offered enough added features over the non-Pro to justify the $200 premium.

iPhone 14 Pro - Rear view Next to iPhone 13 Mini

I purchased the 128GB iPhone 14 Pro in Space Black for $999. This is my most expensive phone purchase to date, and while I do miss the days of premium sub-$500 smartphones, I still feel like the 14 Pro offers the best value for my needs in 2022, especially as it offers one of the best compact camera experiences.

iPhone 14 Pro Design

Compared to last year’s iPhone 13 Pro, the 14 Pro has the same shape and button layout with the Lock button on the right, and its silent and volume rocker on the left. With its larger camera bumps and higher capacity battery, the 14 Pro is slightly heavier and thicker than the 13 Pro weighing 206g vs 204g and measuring 5.81 x 2.81 x 0.31 inches, compared to 5.78 x 2.82 x 0.30 inches. The size difference between the two devices isn’t enough to notice though, and given the overall similar design, it isn’t hard to confuse them.

iPhone 14 Pro - Side View next to iPhone 13 Mini

The 14 Pro is currently available in four colors (Deep Purple, Gold, Silver, and Space Black), which is one option less than the 13 Pro. Alpine Green (my favorite) and Sierra Blue are no longer available, but this year’s Deep Purple is a nice addition.

A design change that isn’t immediately noticeable is the absence of a SIM card tray for all US buyers. My carrier, like many others, makes the switch to an E-SIM simple, meaning you don’t really lose out unless you plan on traveling overseas and hope to enjoy the ability to easily pop in a physical SIM to get new phone service quickly.

In terms of RAM and storage, the 14 Pro is almost identical to the 13 Pro. The 14 Pro still comes with 6GB of RAM and is available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB storage configurations. Just as with the 13 Pro, it’s important to note that the 128GB model limits Pro-Res video recording to 1080p 30FPS, something that isn’t made entirely clear before purchasing. This was very disappointing to discover, and while yes, the smaller storage on the 128GB models would quickly be eaten up with Pro-Res files, as a Pro device with otherwise the exact same hardware, users should be able to make that decision themselves.

iPhone 14 Pro Performance

Unlike last year’s iPhone series which all had the A15 processor, Apple has decided to make the new 4nm A16 ​​Bionic chip exclusive to the Pro lineup, whereas the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus are stuck with the older A15 still. As the newer A16 is still a 6-core CPU, 5-core GPU, and 16-core Neural Engine chip, most users will never notice a difference. The A16 is about 22% faster according to Antutu 9 benchmarks which measure CPU, GPU, and RAM; but in 3DMark which can give you a better idea of gaming performance, we see just a 4% improvement.

iPhone 14 Pro - In Hand next to iPhone 13 Mini

While the newer 4nm architecture, 7% higher CPU clock speed (3460 vs 3240 MHz), and 20% higher memory bandwidth (51.2 against 42.7 GB/s) sound significant on paper, there still aren’t many apps or games that can take full advantage of all that performance. In fact, for most day-to-day tasks, an iPhone 12 or 11 will feel just as snappy.

Battery Life

Unless you are doing heavy video rendering or batch photo edits, it’s unlikely that the performance gains will ever be noticeable. Instead, the more efficient A16 chip helps provide up to an hour of extra battery life on the iPhone 14 Pro. This gives around 23 hours total of video playback, thanks to its slightly larger 3200mAh battery compared to 3095mAh with the 13 Pro. Coming from the iPhone 13 Mini which only had up to 17 hours of playback, these additional 6 hours of runtime have been significant for me and I almost never had any battery anxiety.

As someone who often forgets to charge their phone at night, I can start a day with about 75% of battery at 9am and end with about 25% by 10pm with approximately five hours of screen on time. Even compared to the iPhone 14 which has 20 hours, the 3 hours you get from upgrading to the 14 Pro could alone be worth it to some.


Coming from the significantly smaller 5.4″ iPhone 13 Mini, a 6.1″ display is plenty for me. While on one hand I know I would occasionally appreciate the 6.7″ display on the iPhone 14 Pro Max, I knew that carrying around the larger and heavier phone would overall be a drawback that wasn’t worth the extra $100.

iPhone 14 Pro - Front View - YouTube App

The iPhone 14 Pro features a 6.1″ 120Hz OLED HDR display—superficially the same as the 13 Pro— but it has some key differences. In addition to the benefits of Dynamic Island which offer “a new way to interact with iPhone” I’ll cover shortly, the smaller notch results in a few extra pixels of useable screen space at 2556 x 1179 (compared to 2532 x 1170). Additionally, the iPhone 14 can get much brighter with 1600 nits peak brightness (HDR) vs 1200 and a very impressive 2000 nits peak brightness (outdoors).

iPhone 14 Pro - In Hand

Another difference is that the iPhone 14 Pro’s ProMotion can now go as low as 1Hz compared to 10Hz on the 13 Pro. This allows the display to consume less battery when viewing static content like news articles or photos, but it also introduces an always-on display option. I’ve never been a big fan of using an always-on display and opted to turn it off immediately. It can be customized to provide information on time, notifications, media, weather, and more at a quick glance, but I can just as easily double-tap on my screen when I need to see it. It’s great that iPhones finally offer this, however it seems Apple is still improving the efficiency with this feature, and for right now I don’t see a need to use it.