|Apple announced the iPhone 13 lineup during its 2021 September event. There are four models like the iPhone 12, with camera improvements, display changes, and a better A15 processor. Many of the new features highlighted focused on photography and video.||● 20% smaller notch
● ProMotion 120Hz display for pro models
● ProRes video recording for pro models
● Improved camera sensors, ISP
● A15 Bionic processor
● Releases September 24
● Available starting at $699
The iPhone 13 lineup replaces Apple’s iPhone 12 lineup, offering several upgrades across each model. Upgrades include the new A15 processor, battery life improvements, and broader 5G network capabilities.
Apple continues to differentiate its iPhone models with features unique to each device. So while the iPhone 13 might accomplish everything a customer needs, the pro models bring more compelling technology and better cameras, especially the flagship iPhone 13 Pro Max.
First, we’ll cover the features all four devices share, then break down each model individually. Size, display technology, and camera features set each iPhone apart, but they have similar core technologies.
Apple doesn’t change its device designs but once every few years, so the iPhone 13 retains the iPhone 12 redesign. Each model features flat sides, aluminum bands for the standard model, and stainless steel bands for the pro model.
There aren’t many design changes to differentiate the iPhone 13 from the iPhone 12 beyond new color options and rearrangement of camera modules on the entry-level model. However, the alterations to the design may be enough to warrant new cases for the latest devices but won’t be known without testing or confirmation.
The available colors depend on which model is purchased. The standard models are available in midnight, blue, starlight, pink, and PRODUCT (RED). The pro models have more subdued colors in graphite, silver, gold, and Sierra Blue.
The first design change users will notice is the smaller notch. After years of using the same-sized notch to house the Face ID components, Apple has finally reduced its size by 20%.
The smaller notch size doesn’t change much about what information is displayed on the screen. However, it offers slightly more content viewing space.
|Device Name||Height (mm/inches)||Width (mm/inches)||Depth (mm/inches)||Weight (grams/ounces)|
|iPhone 13 mini||131.5/5.18||64.2/2.53||7.65/0.30||141/4.97|
|iPhone 13 Pro||146.7/5.78||71.5/2.82||7.65/0.30||204/7.19|
|iPhone 13 Pro Max||160.8/6.33||78.1/3.07||7.65/0.30||240/8.46|
|iPhone SE (2020)||138.4/5.45||67.3/2.65||7.3/0.29||148/5.22|
|iPhone 12 mini||131.5/5.18||64.2/2.53||7.4/0.29||135/4.76|
|iPhone 12 Pro||146.7/5.78||71.5/2.82||7.4/0.29||189/6.66|
|iPhone 12 Pro Max||160.8/6.33||78.1/3.07||7.4/0.29||228/8.03|
A15 Bionic processor
The A15 is a processor built on the 5nm process with a 5-core GPU in pro models, a faster Neural Engine, and an advanced ISP. Apple says the new processor results from collaborative efforts to bring ideas to life, not just hit another spec goal.
The speed increases and advancements in machine learning intelligence enable many new computational feats, like the Neural Engine computing 15.8 trillion operations per second. Apple says this allows for features like the new Cinematic mode and Photographic Styles.
Apple differentiated the A15 Bionic between standard and pro iPhone models. The company hasn’t gone into too much detail, but the 5-core GPU seems the key differentiator. Some new features like ProRes recording are restricted to the pro devices due to the difference in computing power.
The A15 provides enough efficiency improvements that battery life is more than an hour longer in every model.
MagSafe remains a primary feature in the iPhone 13 lineup. The feature set hasn’t changed, though Apple is happy to tout the expanding accessory lineup for the system.
Since MagSafe is universal, users won’t need to purchase new accessories to for compatibility with the new iPhones, except for maybe the case. The MagSafe Charger, Wallet, and MagSafe Battery Pack all work as before.
Apple did announce an update to the MagSafe Wallet that enables using the Find My network to locate it. This doesn’t replicate the functionality of an AirTag but does alert the iPhone of its last attachment location to help the user in finding it.
The iPhone 13 has a 6.1-inch display, an aluminum frame, and a dual-camera setup. It is positioned as the best choice for most by fitting between the smaller mini iPhone and more expensive pro models.
Apple has simplified the choice between models in its lineup by having each device offer specific capabilities that make each tier stand out. The iPhone 13 is the balance between features, price, screen size, and battery life.
The Super Retina XDR display is 28% brighter up to 800 nits for regular content, 1200 nits for HDR. In addition, the P3 color gamut and high pixel density mean text will pop, and photos and videos will appear sharper.
Apple didn’t change much about the rear wide-angle camera, with its f/1.6 aperture and 12MP sensor. The new wide lens has sensor-shift optical image stabilization thanks to the new diagonal camera position.
The most significant upgrade is in the ultra-wide-angle camera since it has far improved low-light performance over the iPhone 12. It is also capable of shooting night mode photos for the first time.
Not much else has changed for this model year-over-year beyond what was mentioned previously. Things like MagSafe, more 5G bands, and a smaller notch are available in every iPhone 13 in the lineup.
The iPhone 13 is available in six colors—starlight, midnight, blue, pink, and (PRODUCT)RED. You can configure it with 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB of internal storage for $799, $899, and $1,099 respectively.
iPhone 13 mini
The iPhone 13 mini is a second-generation product that almost didn’t exist due to low demand in the first generation. While iPhone 12 mini owners showed a lot of passion for the tiny smartphone, sales didn’t reflect that passion.
It only has a 5.4-inch display, but it packs the same technology as the standard iPhone 13. The biggest differentiator is its battery life, with it having the smallest battery in the lineup.
Thanks to the A15 Bionic’s efficiency gains, the battery life has increased by about 1.5 hours. So, if battery life was an issue before, it should be less so now.
The selling point of this device is a combination of price point and display size, though neither were enough to drive the iPhone 12 mini’s sales. Analysts and rumors suggest that the iPhone 13 mini could be the end of the line for this product.
The iPhone 13 mini is available in the same five colors as the standard model and starts at $699 for 129GB storage. That moves up to $799 for 256GB and $999 for 512GB.
iPhone 13 Pro
The iPhone 13 Pro sets itself apart with a stainless steel band, three-camera system, and its new 120Hz ProMotion display. The better technology coupled with premium materials makes this high-priced device great for the iPhone power user.
The first thing users may notice on the pro models is the three-camera system. The iPhone 13 Pro has 12MP wide and ultra-wide cameras with improved low light performance, plus a telephoto lens for 3x zoom. In addition, the pro models also have LiDAR for AR scanning and depth data.
Camera improvements don’t stop at specs either — Apple is bringing ProRes recording at 4K 30fps to the pro lineup. Combine this with the Cinematic mode for video, and Apple expects you’ll be able to recreate a high-end cinematic experience with a device you carry in your pocket.
The other big story for iPhone 13 Pro is the new ProMotion display — a 120Hz dynamic refresh display running on OLED at up to 1200 nits. Depending on the content, the refresh rate can drop to as little as 10Hz, so battery life can be preserved when viewing static content.
Beyond the third camera, better display, and stainless steel band, the iPhone 13 Pro has similar technologies to the standard iPhone, like the A15 processor. However, Apple took the A15 even further with a more powerful 5-core GPU in its pro models.
This premium smartphone starts at $999 for 128GB storage. That moves up to $1,099 for 256GB, $1,299 for 512GB, and $1,499 for 1TB.
iPhone 13 Pro Max
Like the mini iPhone and the standard one, the iPhone 13 Pro Max separates itself with its size. The 6.7-inch display uses the same ProMotion technology for 120Hz refresh in its OLED screen.
The larger size means a bigger battery and the longest battery life in an iPhone. In some iPhone generations, like the iPhone 12 Pro Max, Apple provides a special feature to the flagship device to differentiate. However, this year, the only differentiators are screen size and battery life.
Apple’s flagship iPhone 13 Pro Max starts at $1,099 for 128GB of storage. This moves up to $1,199 for 256GB, $1,399 for 512GB, and $1,599 for 1TB.