iPhone 14 Pro Max just beat the Galaxy S22 Ultra in one key way

The iPhone 14 Pro Max being held in a hand
(Image credit: Future)

We’re big fans of the iPhone 14 Pro Max here at TechRadar, and its 6.7-inch display is a major factor in our calling it “truly the best of everything in the current iPhone world.”

Now, DisplayMate – the recognized authority on mobile picture quality – has awarded Apple’s latest flagship its highest display performance grade (A+) after the device set 15 (fifteen!) display performance records during testing.

DisplayMate found the iPhone 14 Pro Max's Super Retina XDR display to be capable of reaching a max brightness of 2,300 nits – that’s almost double the nit-count of the iPhone 13 Pro Max (which boasts the same display size and resolution) and some 500 more than that of the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (based on Samsung’s own claims from earlier this year).

Let there be light

Despite sharing dimensions and resolution, Apple’s most recent top-end iPhone improves upon its predecessor’s display by adding a handful of new features, including an always-on display mode and a new Dynamic Island centered around the phone’s sensor. 

Evidently, though, the iPhone 14 Pro Max is also significantly brighter than the iPhone 13 Pro Max, having now usurped its older sibling as the recipient of DisplayMate’s Best Smartphone Display award. Interestingly, Apple advertises the iPhone 14 Pro Max as offering up to 2,000 nits of brightness – yet DisplayMate managed to record a figure of 2,300 nits.

Images of the iPhone 14 Pro Max

We're big fans of the iPhone 14 Pro Max's 6.7-inch display (Image credit: TechRadar)

The diagnostics company has also credited Apple’s latest handset with awards for highest absolute color accuracy, smallest shift in color accuracy, highest image contrast accuracy and intensity scale accuracy, as well as for smallest change in peak luminance. 

Ironically, the displays used by Apple in the iPhone 14 Pro Max are actually produced by Samsung, so we’d expect the latter’s next flagship – likely to be the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra – to match or even exceed Apple’s latest handset for brightness.

For now, though, the iPhone 14 Pro Max is the brightest smartphone on the block – even if the Samsung S22 Ultra remains our top overall pick of the best phones money can buy in 2022. 

Axel Metz
Senior Staff Writer

Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion. 

Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.