Online Apple Store down ahead of iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro Max and HomePod mini preorders


Apple late Thursday took its online storefront down as it prepares for what is expected to be a crush of preorders for iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro Max and HomePod mini.

Following Apple’s typical preorder schedule, the new devices will be made available alongside other products like as-yet-unreleased iPhone 12 series leather cases on Friday at 5 a.m. Pacific, 8 a.m. Eastern. Apple this week said leather sleeves and the MagSafe Duo charger will ship at a later date.

This year’s iPhone lineup represents a significant update to Apple’s most recent handsets. A new iPhone 5-inspired design is applied across the range, while internal upgrades present improvements in key areas like processing, photographic capabilities and connectivity. On the latter, iPhone 12 marks Apple’s foray into 5G, with all models supporting the speedy protocol.

Apple’s new A14 Bionic system-on-chip powers the smartphone line, while each handset sports an OLED Super Retina XDR display. MagSafe is another tentpole feature, enabling fast 15W wireless charging, new case options and more.

The soon to be available iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max stretch Apple’s smartphone offerings to new limits.

The iPhone 12 mini boasts a 5.4-inch display seated in an aluminum chassis, includes ultra-wide and wide 12 megapixel cameras, and delivers a pocketable form factor. Like the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini supports Dolby Vision HDR video recording at up to 30 frames per second, while Apple claims battery life hits 15 hours.

Prices for the iPhone 12 mini start at $699 for a 64GB model and move to $749 for 128GB and $849 for 256GB. The iPhone 12 mini is offered in white, black, blue, green and Product(RED), with sales of the latter going toward the Global Fund to combat COVID-19.

Apple’s largest model, the iPhone 12 Pro Max, bumps up screen real estate to 6.7 inches and adds a telephoto camera into the mix. Further, the 12 Pro Max is the only iPhone 12 to benefit from a larger sensor on the wide angle camera, which also boasts sensor shift stabilization. A LiDAR Scanner assists in augmented reality applications and camera functions, while Dolby Vision HDR recording can reach 60 frames per second. Battery life is rated at up to 20 hours of video playback.

The stainless steel iPhone 12 Pro Max is priced at $1,099 for 128GB of storage, $1,199 for 256GB and $1,399 for 512GB. Finishes include graphite, silver, gold and a new Pacific Blue.

Also up for sale is HomePod mini. A more affordable sibling to Apple’s HomePod, the new device packs a backlit touch panel, full-range dynamic driver and two passive radiators into a spherical, fabric-covered body. An acoustic waveguide situated at the speaker’s base is designed to provide clear, 360-degree audio playback.

Inside, an S5 system-on-chip powers advanced “computational audio” features to ensure high-fidelity sound reproduction. The silicon, along with a U1 Ultra Wideband chip, provides the smarts necessary for Siri, accurate audio Handoff, HomeKit control and a new Intercom feature.

HomePod mini is priced at $99 and comes in Space Gray or white.

Preorders for iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro Max and HomePod mini are set to go live at 5 a.m. Pacific, 8 a.m. Eastern. The first orders are slated to arrive on Nov. 13.

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