Categories: Tech

Review: The iPhone 14 Pro Max fuses the best of all worlds into one

It’s that time of the year again for another phone upgrade. This time, the trajectory is bringing us to the iPhone 14 Pro Max, the latest top-of-the-range smartphone to come out of the Cupertino headquarters. And also, perhaps the best iPhone to have come out in a while.

As always, Apple outdoes itself to offer both hardware and software upgrades to create the best smartphone in the market right now. The iPhone 14 Pro Max joins a lineup of iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus and iPhone 14 Pro models, sitting at the top as the most advanced (and biggest) option to cop.

Equipped with the A16 Bionic, which is the fastest chip in a smartphone, the iPhone 14 Pro Max can now support new and improved technology and features, while being 40 percent faster than its competitors. It’s also what’s powering your graphics-intensive games and apps with efficiency, so you can last longer and play harder.

Review: The Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max

Design

Call us superficial, but we dig a smartphone that looks as good as it functions, and Apple has created some of the best looking ones around throughout the years. The iPhone 14 Pro Max is largely similar to the iPhone 13 Pro Max in that it still combines a surgical-grade stainless steel and textured matte glass design. This time, the 6.7-inch model comes in four new colours – space black, silver, gold, and deep purple – the latter of which is a chic in-between if you can’t decide if you want a coloured phone or stick to the usual black.

At the front, the same Ceramic Shield front cover continues to protect your precious device from accidental spills, bathtub suicide missions, and even dust. Beneath that is a new Super Retina XDR display with ProMotion, which – for the first time on an iPhone – also supports Always-On display. If you’re worried about that sucking your battery dry, don’t fret – the phone has been equipped with multiple power-efficient technologies that’ll keep your juice levels up. This also means that all the widgets, Live Activities, and that iOS16 home screen that you’ve painstakingly customised will always been available at a glance.

As for brightness, expect the highest peak brightness outdoors in a smartphone at 2,000 nits – twice more than the iPhone 13 Pro.

Dynamic Island

The iPhone prides itself on being interactive and intuitive, and the Dynamic Island is the latest initiative by Apple to enhance the user experience. This update sees the front TrueDepth camera modified to make room, and is a shortcut to controlling active apps without impeding content on the screen.

This means that navigating between say, an active timer, your Spotify music, and maps will no longer require you to open up the individual apps. Instead, simply tap and hold the Dynamic Island, and a concise version of the apps will show up at the top. More importantly, they’ll remain interactive so you can manage everything that’s happening easily.

Apple is still working with third party app developers to expand this functionality, so don’t be surprised if you see your other apps show up on Dynamic Island.

A new Pro Camera System

Ditch that bulky camera, because the iPhone 14 Pro Max’s upgrade will be more than capable of capturing some of the best photos and videos. Inside, the Photonic Engine not only improves mid to low-light photography, but also uses what Apple calls Deep Fusion to also deliver extreme detail – perfect if you’re sick of visible but fuzzy nighttime shots. The new 48MP main camera also offers users a new 2x Telephoto option that delivers Portrait shots with even more depth and detail.

The quad-pixel sensor in the iPhone also makes life easier when it comes to pro workflows. It not only optimises for detail in ProRAW, but also has a new machine learning model that’s designed specifically for the quad-pixel sensor. This means that the iPhone now shoots ProRAW at 48MP with intricate detail, opening up new possibilities for budding photographers and filmmakers.

Another highlight worth looking forward to is a new Action mode, where the iPhone takes incredibly smooth videos even if you’re running, are on the bus, or just have shaky hands in general.

Crash Detection and Emergency SOS

We’re not sure about you, but we never thought that mobile devices would be the guardian angels of the century.

The entire iPhone 14 lineup is equipped with Crash Detection, which utilises a new dual-core accelerometer within to detect G-forces of up to 256Gs, as well as a new high dynamic range gyroscope, which detects cabin pressure change. Meanwhile, the phone’s GPS is working to let the algorithm know if there has been any speed changes, while the microphone recognises loud noises typically heard in car accidents.

If you do get into a severe car crash, all of these features will identify that you’ve been in an accident, and automatically dial emergency services for you if you’re unconscious or unable to reach your iPhone. This feature works best with the new Apple Watch Series 8, which also has Crash Detection to provide better accuracy and help options.

If you’re the sort who loves taking paths less travelled, Emergency SOS via satellite will enable you to get help even without cellular or Wi-Fi coverage. This includes an initial questionnaire and follow-up messages, as well as instructions on where to point the phone to connect to the satellite. All this information is then relayed to Apple-trained staff who will call for help on your behalf.

Going somewhere dodgy? You can also use this technology to manually share your location over satellite with Find My, so you’ll feel a sense of security when hiking or camping off the grid. We have, after all, watched enough serial killer documentaries over the summer, haven’t we?

The iPhone 14 Pro Max is now available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB storage capacities, and can be purchased online at Apple Thailand., in the Apple Store app, at Apple Store locations, and through Apple Authorised Resellers and select carriers.

Shatricia Nair

Shatricia Nair has a passion for motoring, beauty, and wellness, and is perpetually knee-deep in the world of V8s, retinols, and latest fitness trends. She has nine years of experience writing for digital media, and her bylines have appeared in Prestige, and Augustman. She'll do (almost) anything for good chocolate chip cookies.

Shatricia Nair

Shatricia Nair has a passion for motoring, beauty, and wellness, and is perpetually knee-deep in the world of V8s, retinols, and latest fitness trends. She has nine years of experience writing for digital media, and her bylines have appeared in Prestige, and Augustman. She'll do (almost) anything for good chocolate chip cookies.