If you’re looking for a reasonably priced mid-segment iPhone, you’re probably torn between the iPhone 11 from 2019 and the new iPhone 12 Mini. I’ve used both of these phones extensively, and believe me when I say it’s not easy to decide which one is best for you.



There are aspects of both phones that are totally identical, and there are aspects of both phones that are poles apart. One of those areas where build quality and design are poles different is design. In comparison to the little 12 Mini, the iPhone 11 has a footprint that appears and feels huge.It has to be bigger because it has a larger display, but it also has thicker bezels around the display and rounder edges, making it feel even bigger.. Check out our overview of the best Popsocket grips for the iPhone 11 while we’re on the subject of in-hand feel.

The iPhone 12 Mini, on the other hand, is Apple’s reintroduction of the iPhone 5. It has the same footprint as the original with the same flat aluminium sides. It looks and feels fantastic, and it’s clearly a step up from the iPhone 11. Because of its modest size, it is a dream come true for small iPhone owners who can now buy a small, fully loaded iPhone without making any compromises. However, if you’re moving from a huge or even a regular-sized smartphone, the small footprint can feel a little toy-like.

Aside from that, both phones feature matte aluminium borders and glossy glass on the backs, which collects a lot of fingerprints. The iPhone 12 Mini does boast Ceramic Shield glass, which Apple claims is four times more shatter resistant.



You can see the display panels if you look beneath the glass. Poles apart once more. The iPhone 11 sports a 6.1-inch IPS LCD with a pixel density of 326 pixels per inch, which is rather contentious. To be honest, the display isn’t horrible in and of itself. With good colours and saturation, it’s absolutely usable. When compared to other smartphones in the same price range, however, it pales in comparison.

You get a considerably more technologically sophisticated display with the iPhone 12 Mini. A huge improvement in quality from LCD to AMOLED, as well as a large increase in density from 326 to 476 pixels per inch and significantly lower bezels. The iPhone 12 Mini’s display outperforms the iPhone 11 in terms of quality. Size, on the other hand, is important. Although the 5.4″ display on the 12 Mini is higher in quality, it is substantially smaller. This makes it less suitable for consumers that frequently watch movies, play games, or simply use their phones. There’s a reason why huge phones are so popular, and while I understand why the 12 Mini is so popular, I can’t dispute the convenience of a larger display over a smaller one.


Performance & Software

But enough with the poles for now. Now let’s talk about something extremely similar. The software’s performance and experience. Both phones run the most recent version of iOS 14, and the software suite is identical. The iPhone 11(review) and iPhone 12 Mini are both incredibly capable performers when it comes to performance. Despite the iPhone 12 Mini’s latest generation A14 CPU, I tested them extensively and found no differences in performance.

However, in a few years, that generation gap will make a difference. Because it is a newer model, the iPhone 12 Mini will provide smoother performance for a longer amount of time and will receive an additional year of software upgrades than the iPhone 11.



Right now, let’s take a look at the cameras.. Both smartphones feature very comparable camera setups in terms of optics. Both iPhones have a 12MP ultrawide camera with f2.4 aperture and a 12MP front camera with f2.2 aperture. The primary camera and the processing chips have the most significant variations. With the next-generation A14 Bionic chip, the iPhone 12 has a 12MP f1.6 primary camera. The iPhone 11, on the other hand, has a 12MP f1.8 primary camera and an A13 Bionic CPU. Let’s see how they perform in the actual world.



  • Apart from slight changes in white balance and exposure, both devices produce similar results with the primary camera. Both smartphones produce photos with realistic colours and a wide dynamic range. The iPhone 12, on the other hand, takes significantly brighter photos with more details and superior noise reduction.
  • The ultrawide camera configuration is the same on both iPhones, as is the overall picture quality. We discovered that the iPhone 12 takes clearer photos with greater details after giving it a closer look.
  • Both devices offer outstanding subject separation precision and good skin tones while shooting portraits. In some cases, the iPhone 12 is marginally better at subject separation while photographing.
  • Selfies taken with both devices have good sharpness and correct skin tones, with small white balance differences.
  • When it comes to low-light performance, the iPhone 12 comes out on top. On the iPhone 11, only the primary camera supports low light mode, whereas the iPhone 12’s night mode works on both the back and front selfie cameras. Low-light photos on the iPhone 12 are brighter and crisper, with considerably superior noise reduction.



  • In terms of resolutions and frame rates, all three cameras on both iPhones can shoot videos in 4K at up to 60 frames per second.
  • When it comes to video quality, the iPhone 11 delivers industry-leading results with vibrant colours and fine details.
  • All of this is enhanced by the iPhone 12’s improved picture stabilisation and Dolby Vision support, which is a game changer if you have a compatible display.

To summarise, both smartphones capture some of the best photographs and videos in the class. If you’re a casual user who only wants to take pictures and share them, the iPhone 11 will suffice. However, upgrading to the iPhone 12 will provide you with superior video recording and low-light capabilities. Personally, I believe that either of the two phone cameras will satisfy all consumers.


Charging & Battery Life

Let’s return to the issue of poles apart and discuss battery life. The iPhone 11, like the iPhone XR, is a long-lasting device. Even if you’re a heavy user, a battery pack that lasts a day is what we’re talking about. Expect a day and a half of use on a single charge if you’re an average user who only reads news, social media feeds, and other such things. The iPhone 12 Mini, on the other hand, does not fare as well.

It will be difficult to stay awake for a full day if you are a heavy user. I’ve found that the battery drains quickly when I’m gaming.Aside from that, the iPhone 12 Mini should last a day for the average user, but no longer. To summarise, as a 12 Mini user, I will bring a power bank on a single day vacation, however as an iPhone 11 user, I will not.

Another thing to keep in mind is that both phones now just come with a charging wire and no power adapter, so keep that in mind when making your decision. Both phones have wireless charging capabilities, however the iPhone 12 Mini features MagSafe support, which allows for faster wireless charging and compatibility with some magnetic peripherals.


Speakers & Call Quality

In terms of call quality, both devices have had similar experiences, with decent signal strength and audio quality. When listening to music, I noticed that the stereo speakers on the iPhone 12 Mini sounded a little smaller than the iPhone 11’s fuller sounding speakers.



Now it’s time to wrap things up. What smartphone should you choose between the iPhone 11 and the iPhone 12 Mini? I strongly advise you to take a look at both of the phones. The final decision, in my opinion, comes down to the screen, and it is a difficult one. On the one hand, the size is more usable and pleasurable, and on the other, the quality is significantly superior. It is up to you to pick what will win you over.


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