The “Plus” moniker returns with the release of the iPhone 14 Plus, having last appeared on the iPhone 8 Plus back in 2017. The iPhone 14 Plus increases the size over the standard iPhone 14, while retaining almost identical specifications and features.
You may be asking “Why should I get this when I can get the iPhone 14 Pro Max?”. Granted, it sits in the awkward spot between the standard iPhone 14 and the Pro / Pro Max flagships. Let’s find out if its worth buying and what do you get over the standard iPhone.
iPhone 14 Plus – Specifications
|Model||iPhone 14 Plus|
|Dimensions||160.8 x 78.1 x 7.80mm|
|Processor||Apple A15 Bionic|
|Storage||128 / 256 / 512 GB|
|Display||Super Retina XDR display|
6.7‑inch (diagonal) all‑screen OLED display
2778 x 1284 pixel resolution at 458 ppi
|Camera (Front)||12MP, f/1.9|
|Camera (Rear)||12 MP, f/1.5, 26mm (wide)|
12 MP, f/2.4, 13mm (ultrawide)
|Operating System||iOS 16|
|Battery and Charging||4323 mAh|
20W, 15W (MagSafe)
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6|
What’s In The Box?
As with other Apple iPhone products, the box contains the phone itself, a lightning charging cable and a user manual.
Looking at it from a distance, the iPhone 14 Plus is basically the stretched version of the standard version. It is made of aluminium and glass, and is wide, taller and heavier then the standard version, albeit slightly lighter than the iPhone 14 Pro despite having a larger screen (6.7-inches ver 6.1-inches). Thickness remain the same as the standard counterpart though.
It comes in 5 different colours: Midnight, Purple, Starlight, (PRODUCT)RED and Blue. Today we have the Purple coloured unit for review.
The 14 Plus has sharp edges and flat sides, which can be a fatiguing to hold especially considering the larger size. It is slippery too, and I had to grip the phone harder to prevent it from dropping, causing the edges to sink into my palms. I would highly recommend owners to get a phone case for better ergonomics, at the cost of increasing the size of the phone itself.
This is where the iPhone 14 Plus varies the most from the standard iPhone. It is pretty much the alternative for buyers who want a larger screen without forking out an additional RM1,600 to get the Pro Max.
Despite that, you do get a brilliant phone display. You get a 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED screen with a 2778 x 1284 pixel resolution, along with HDR support and Apple’s True Tone feature. Instead of the new Dynamic Island reserved for the Pro and Pro Max models, you get a traditional notch similar to the previous generation.
The 6.7-inch screen is huge, closer in size to the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 7.0 (released back in 2016) than the standard version. One-handed use could take some time to get used to, I often struggle to reach corners even with Reachability feature turned on. If you are used to one-handed operation from past generations, grab the standard iPhone 14.
Despite capping at 60Hz, the screen feels snappy and fluid to use, albeit not as smooth as the 120hz ProMotion display on the Pro and Pro Max models. Watching movies and gaming on the iPhone 14 Plus is a treat too, with vivid colours, and excellent viewing angles.
Having tested the iPhone 14 Pro Max with two-handed operation, I soon got used to the iPhone 14 Plus as a daily driver for a couple of weeks. Overall, the phone feels great to use, with a caveat.
Picking up this phone after having used the iPhone 13 Pro feels natural to me. It feels 95% the same ( the remaining 5% being the screen size) to past generations, with quite a few upgrades in specifications.
My only gripe with this is, having used the Pro Max previously, the lack of Dynamic Island certainly made me feel like I got a downgrade. The notch remains the same as before and I hoped to see upgrades on this front.
The iPhone 14 Plus inherits the A15 Bionic chipset from the iPhone 13 Pro, specifically the variant with 5 GPU cores. It also gets a larger RAM, 6GB vs 4GB. Despite being an old chip, the A15 Bionic is not a slouch, and can handle whatever we throw at it. While running the phone at prolonged loads, ie: 30 minutes of Genshin Impact, the phone starts to feel moderately warm on my hands, but I have yet to experience any form of throttling or lag.
I have always trusted iPhone cameras since they became my daily driver. Not only the colours were natural, they were also the easiest “just snap” cameras to use around. I always could just focus on getting the shot, instead of fiddling with apertures, exposure and shutter speeds. I am glad that this user experience carries over to the iPhone 14 Plus with a few upgrades.
In this generation, the main and selfie cameras have been upgraded from the iPhone 13 series, now featuring larger apertures for better low light performance. The selfie camera is also equipped with autofocus. The ultrawide however, carries over from the iPhone 13 series.
Both rear cameras present natural colours with pleasant skin tones, with plenty of sharpness in brightly lit scenes. Lowlight performance is decent, but with less details due to noise.
Video recording quality is top notch, where you can record up to 4K 60 fps quality. The optical image stabilisation is great at smoothening up motion except for extreme situations. The on-board microphone is captures sound clearly too.
The iPhone 14 Plus features a dual speaker setup: a bottom speaker and aearpiece that also doubles as a second speaker. The speakers are quite loud, with minimal distortion at high volumes. Overall, audio quality is on par with the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
The iPhone 14 Plus’ battery life is excellent, easily lasting up to 2 days with moderate use: a healthy mix of gaming, video watching, and playing Spotify with earbuds connected etc.
Charging remains the same with it capping at 20W with an Apple charging adapter. A full charge would need about 1 hour 30 minutes. If you are in a rush, you can get to 50% charge in under 30 minutes.
Starting at RM4,699, the iPhone 14 Plus is a compelling smartphone for the price, but suffers from the fact that it is meant to fill the gap between the iPhone 14 and the Pro series. The standard iPhone offers similar specifications at a more accommodating screen size and price point, while the range topping Pro series have added features such as the latest A16 Bionic chip and Dynamic Island.
So who would I recommend the iPhone 14 Plus to? If you do not care about the latest flagship features and specifications, and just want the large screen and excellent battery life, then this should be in your shortlist.