iPhone 14 Plus review

A larger screen and battery without the Pro price tag

Apple iPhone 14 Plus angle back hero
(Image: © Future / Lance Ulanoff)

TechRadar Verdict

The iPhone 14 Plus is a great option for those after a bigger handset, with a design, display, cameras and build quality that are all excellent, if a bit last-generation. It's also a more affordable way to get into Apple’s big-screen smartphone world, without having to shell out $1,000 / £1,000-plus.

Pros

  • +

    Attractive design, quality build

  • +

    Big screen and bigger battery

  • +

    eSIM (US models only) and satellite

  • +

    Good price for a big iPhone

Cons

  • -

    The notch is now very dated

  • -

    A15 Bionic isn't Apple's best chip

  • -

    Not a huge upgrade

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Two-minute review

Everything you read about Apple’s iPhone 14 is true of the iPhone 14 Plus. You're getting the same processor, display technology, and dual camera array on the back. What sets this phone apart from its smaller sibling is, obviously, its screen size and battery life; and for some, that will be reason enough to choose it over the iPhone 14.

The 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus is a newcomer to the iPhone lineup, supplanting the adorably small iPhone 13 mini, which apparently failed to inspire buyers. With this more affordable plus-sized smartphone, Apple hopes to attract those who aspire to the big-screen excitement of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, but don’t have the budget to afford it; or who perhaps just don't need the power afforded by the iPhone 14 Pro Max’s 48MP sensor and leading-edge A16 Bionic CPU.

Coming with most of the same limitations as its non-Pro sibling, the iPhone 14 Plus might seem like just another good-enough handset; but don’t underestimate the benefits of a big screen and excellent battery life. These things matter, and getting them for $899 / £949 / AU$1,579 (for the base 128GB phone), as opposed to the $1,099 / £1,199 / AU$1,899 you’d pay for the iPhone 14 Pro Max, means this is a smartphone worth considering.

Taken by itself, the iPhone 14 Plus is a somewhat staid but attractive smartphone. The design is virtually unchanged from the iPhone 13 lineup, except for its Pro-level-without-being-Pro size. There's no Dynamic Island upgrade for the iPhone 14 or 14 Plus, with the notch that Apple made 20% smaller with the iPhone 13 sticking around for another generation. It’s still an excellent, 458ppi display with 2,000,000:1 contrast ratio; just note that there’s no always on-display or adaptive refresh rate here, and you'll be happy enough with the tasteful 60Hz OLED panel.

The best iPhone of this generation, sadly not, but it's still a brilliant option and offers a nice middle ground between the standard 14 and the 14 Pro Max, without the 14 Pro's price premium.

Apple iPhone 14 Plus lock screen

The iPhone 14 Plus looks just like the iPhone 14, but it's bigger (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

Even though we don't get a telephoto lens or a 48MP primary sensor on the iPhone 14 Plus, the two 12MP cameras on the back (the main and ultra-wide) are a step up from the iPhone 13’s array. Part of this is due to better sensors and lenses, but there’s also the new Photonic Engine, which applies Apple’s Deep Fusion image technology to uncompressed images. Even the front 12MP camera gets an upgrade, with a better sensor and autofocus.

These are characteristically above-average cameras that we think will satisfy most casual photographers and videographers.

Performance is excellent; in benchmarks the A15 Bionic (the same version of the chip as found in last year’s iPhone 13 Pro) is a tick below what you'd get from the iPhone 14 Pro series’ top-of-the-line A16 Bionic, but we challenge anyone to tell the difference in real-world use.

Battery life is, as you might expect with a phone of this size, exemplary. In one video rundown test we got a solid 25 hours, although your mileage, obviously, may vary.

While it can be difficult to avoid fixating on what the iPhone 14 Plus doesn't have, we think many will look at what the iPhone 14 Plus brings to the table: big-screen iPhone fun, performance, and battery life at a more affordable price than the equivalent Pro. And where the iPhone 14 offers no compelling reason to upgrade from the iPhone 13, the appeal of the iPhone 14 Plus is visibly obvious.

iPhone 14 Plus price and availability

  • 128GB: $899 / £949 / AU$1,579
  • 256GB: $999 / £1,059 / AU$1,749
  • 512GB: $1,199 / £1,279 / AU$2,099

Apple unveiled its entire iPhone 14 line – the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max – on September 7, 2022. 

The iPhone 14 Plus went on preorder on September 9 and is now available, as of October 7. It starts at $899 / £949 / AU$1,579 for the 128GB model, but you can get it with up to 512GB of storage (check out our best iPhone 14 deals if you're already interested).

Apple iPhone 14 Plus back

The model we tested came in Apple's new purple finish (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)
  • Value score: 4/5

iPhone 14 Plus specs

The iPhone 14 Plus comes in three storage configurations – 128GB, 256GB and 512GB – with 6GB of RAM offered across the board. 

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iPhone 14 Plus specs
Header Cell - Column 1
Dimensions:78.1 x 160.8 x 7.8mm
Weight:203g
Screen:6.7-inch Super XDR OLED
Resolution:2778 x 1284 pixels
Refresh rate60Hz
CPU:A15 Bionic
RAM:6GB
Storage:128GB / 256GB / 512GB
OS:iOS 16
Rear Cameras:12MP main (26mm, f/1.5), 12MP ultrawide (13mm, f/2.4)
Front Camera:12MP
Battery:3,279mAh
Charging:20W (wired) + MagSafe & wireless
Colors:Midnight, Starlight, red, blue, purple, yellow

iPhone 14 Plus design

  • Aging design, but one that retains its allure  
  • Solid aluminum construction
  • Glass and Ceramic Shield have premium looks
  • No SIM slot on US models

From its aluminum frame to its glass back, its edge-to-edge, ceramic-shield-covered and notched display, its pill-shaped volume and power buttons, alert slider, Lightning port and grille placement, the design of the iPhone 14 Plus is eminently familiar, and mostly – we emphasize mostly – unchanged from the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 before it.

Naturally, there's an undeniable size difference. Whereas the 6.1-inch iPhone 14 is virtually indistinguishable from the iPhone 13, the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus is 6.33 inches (160.8mm) tall and 3.07 inches (78.1mm) wide. Compare this to the 5.78-inch (146.7mm) by 2.82-inch (71.5mm) iPhone 14. The two phones are, by the way, the exact same thickness, at 0.31-inches (7.8mm).

Apple iPhone 14 Plus edge without SIM slot

There's no SIM slot on the US version of the iPhone 14 Plus (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

Without question, the biggest design difference from the iPhone 13 generation to the iPhone 14 line of phones – although only on models sold in the US – is that there’s no SIM slot along the left edge. The switch to an all eSIM design in the US has made the physical SIM slot obsolete, and gives the phone a slightly cleaner look.

Apple iPhone 14 Plus base

The iPhone 14 Plus's bottom edge still features a Lightning port (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

This larger iPhone does outweigh the iPhone 14, coming in at 203 grams to the iPhone 14’s 172 grams, although despite being essentially the same size as the iPhone 14 Pro Max, the iPhone 14 Plus is 37 grams lighter. This may be due to the Plus' new thermal management system, which helps keep the phone operating cooler and – according to Apple – makes it easier to replace a broken back glass panel.

In general, the handset feels cool, smooth, and solid. We didn’t drop it to test durability, but we did run the phone under some cool water. It can handle that, and is rated for up to 1.5 meters of freshwater for 30 minutes – just don’t plug it back in until it's fully dried out.

Design score: 4/5

iPhone 14 Plus display

  • Super Retina XDR OLED is still the best iPhone screen technology you can get 
  • You might miss adaptive refresh
  • Bigger is better in videos, photography, gaming, and more
  • Sorry, no always-on display
  • It’s time to retire the notch