The iPhone 13 stays a robust improve for individuals who haven’t switched telephones for quite a lot of years, particularly when the smaller updates of the iPhone 14 are considered.
- A lot improved battery life
- Vivid, vivid OLED show
- Wonderful major digital camera
- No ProMotion
- No optical zoom
New camerasApple has introduced the digital camera system (zoom apart) from the 12 Professional Max to the iPhone 13
Improved batteryGreater cells and a extra environment friendly chipset assist endurance
A15 Bionic chipsetApple’s new silicon ups the efficiency in lots of areas
The iPhone 14 could be right here, however with minimal upgrades for Apple’s newest smartphone, there’s nonetheless loads of life within the iPhone 13 but.
Not like the iPhone 13 Professional fashions, which Apple discontinued with the launch of the iPhone 14 Professional, it nonetheless sells the iPhone 13 alongside the newer 14 sequence. It’s picked up a small worth minimize in sure areas, and might typically be discovered even cheaper on huge offers days and through gross sales.
It additionally now runs iOS 16 and will proceed to obtain software program updates for a few years to come back, together with iOS 17 which we’ll most certainly see introduced in June at WWDC and launched to everybody later within the 12 months.
Design and display screen
- A 20% smaller notch
- Brighter OLED show
- Similar IP68 ranking and Ceramic Defend because the iPhone 12
Apple went huge with the iPhone 12 redesign, ridding the curved sides of older fashions, and giving the brand new machine a refresh that harked again to the enduring iPhone 4 and 5. It was a welcome change, particularly after years of the curved iPhone 6 look.
With such a major change to the iPhone’s exterior occurring just lately, this replace was all the time going to be iterative. Apple has made some design adjustments, however they’re all pretty minor.
The notch is 20% smaller, which is welcome however nonetheless extra annoying than a lot of the Android competitors which have switched to hole-punch type cutouts for the entrance cameras. On the iPhone 13 Mini, the smaller notch is most welcome; however right here it doesn’t have a lot of an influence. It will have been good to make use of that additional area to show the battery proportion, as an example.
The iPhone 13 can also be barely heavier and thicker, to account for the larger battery and upgraded digital camera module. Except you maintain the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 subsequent to one another, nonetheless, you’re unlikely to note this distinction. The bigger digital camera bump does imply that the machine received’t match into older instances, although, which could show annoying to some however is hardly a shock. It’s similar to the iPhone 14 although, by way of dimension,
71.5 x 7.65 x 146.7 MM
iPhone 13 Mini
64.2 x 7.65 x 131.5 MM
71.5 x 7.8 x 146.7 MM
Apple launched a few new color choices for the iPhone 13. Starlight provides a touch of gold to a silver physique, whereas the Product(RED) mannequin you’ll see pictured is a deeper shade than earlier than; it actually is sort of placing.
Midnight is a very darkish blue that appears nearly black, plus there are blue and lightweight pink choices, too. This isn’t fairly the standout number of colors we’ve seen in recent times; I’m upset that there’s no pale inexperienced and purple choice – each of which I actually favored on the iPhone 12.
The upgrades that Apple added with the iPhone 12 stay, together with Ceramic Defend and the IP68 water-resistance ranking. I used an iPhone 12 for a complete 12 months, and regardless of a couple of drops and no display screen protector fitted, the telephone nonetheless seems in good situation. There are a couple of micro-scratches on the show – clearly, becoming a display screen protector would have alleviated such points – however they aren’t too unhealthy. I’d hope it will be an analogous case this time round.
It’s the iPhone 13 Professional mannequin that will get all of the big-screen upgrades this time round, and it’s a disgrace the iPhone 13 sticks with the usual 60Hz panel – though it’s a excellent 60Hz panel.
ProMotion, which provides an adaptive refresh fee that may ramp as much as 120Hz and right down to 10Hz, is likely one of the headline additions to each Professional fashions – and I’ve to say it’s my favorite iPhone improve in years.
A sooner show isn’t actually one thing you want for whenever you haven’t already skilled it, however after you have, it’s arduous to modify again to a 60Hz panel. Scrolling, swiping and gaming all really feel super-smooth; it simply makes animations and actions a lot sooner. Judging by Apple’s previous releases, we’ll see ProMotion on this sequence finally – though it’d find yourself being the iPhone 15, because it nonetheless will not be on the iPhone 14.
Nonetheless, the iPhone 13 options a fantastic OLED show. The smaller notch is welcome when watching movies, whereas the additional hit of brightness (an 800 nits max on the whole actions and 1100 in HDR video) is of slight profit when studying messages or viewing Google Maps instructions on sunny days. It isn’t a motive to improve, nonetheless.
Apple’s screens are typically among the extra impartial round, reigning within the overly saturated look of Samsung’s panels. Colors are vibrant and immersive, with out feeling lurid. An episode of the visually beautiful Our Planet on Netflix confirmed this off completely, with incredible distinction and correct colors.
You don’t have any management over the display screen, although. Don’t anticipate finding a number of presets out there in case your desire is for a cooler, or hotter, panel.
- A duo of latest 12MP sensors
- New diagonal orientation
- Deal with video with a brand new Cinematic mode
The largest spec improve for the iPhone 13 comes by means of the duo of cameras on the again. The brand new cameras right here – broad and extremely broad – are just about similar to what you’ll discover on the iPhone 12 Professional Max, minus the optical zoom in fact. That is nice contemplating that was top-of-the-line digital camera telephones round.
The principle broad digital camera stays at 12 megapixel, with an f/1.6 lens, whereas the 12-megapixel extremely broad has a slower f/2.4 lens and a 120-degree area of view.
That is spectacular stuff, particularly when you think about final 12 months’s smaller Professional mannequin didn’t even have this digital camera. It makes this a sizeable improve over the iPhone 12.
The digital camera sensors themselves are a lot bigger (1.7µm on the iPhone 13 vs 1.4µm on the iPhone 12) to permit in additional gentle. The principle broad sensor now has in-body stabilisation, too, which Apple calls Sensor Shift stabilisation. Each of those upgrades assist considerably in low-light conditions – the images I snapped when the lighting was lower than stellar have been much like these taken with the 12 Professional Max.
Taking pictures at evening, in darker bars and eating places, is an actual spotlight. The iPhone 13 tends to power itself into the devoted Evening mode extra typically than the iPhone 13 Professional, however the outcomes are supremely detailed with pure vivid factors and minimal noise.
Daylight images taken with the earlier mannequin have been respectable, and it’s arduous to inform the distinction between panorama photographs taken with the iPhone 12 and the 13, and even the iPhone 14 for that matter.
Nevertheless, when you’re coming from an excellent older iPhone then the distinction is much better, with punchier colors and sharper particulars obvious. That greater broad sensor additionally helps with a extra pure bokeh impact (the gentle blur that surrounds an object whenever you get up-close), which is all the time welcome. If you’d like a stronger, extra customisable blur then the devoted Portrait mode is superb.
Apple is providing you with a little bit extra management over the look of your snaps this time round with a brand new software program function referred to as Pictures Types. The Vibrant type, as an example, boosts colors and saturation, very a lot within the vein of a Galaxy S-series flagship.
The Excessive Distinction choice ups the dynamic vary, producing way more placing outcomes that aren’t too dissimilar to these from a Google Pixel. Lastly, there’s Heat and Cool, each of which do just about what they are saying on the tin.
It’s vital to not view these choices merely as filters, since they’re greater than that. They immediately alter the pipeline of the picture, which means you may’t flick between types or take away them after you’ve taken the photograph.
Cinematic mode acquired quite a lot of display screen time throughout the machine’s reveal and it isn’t arduous to see why. It’s nearly a Portrait mode for video, however it takes this concept additional by including in focus racking, permitting the digital camera to modify focus factors – for instance – if a face turns away.
The blur impact is much from good, however it’s a lot better than makes an attempt made by the Android competitors; plus, the main focus racking works very nicely. I lined up quite a lot of objects, with the digital camera altering focus easily as I moved them away. It labored nicely with faces, too.
You possibly can file Cinematic mode in HDR Dolby Imaginative and prescient as much as 1080p at 30fps, far decrease than the 4K 60fps most in the usual video modes.
I wouldn’t name Cinematic mode a gimmick. It really works nicely and I’m positive that, like Portrait mode earlier than it, it would get higher over time. I simply can’t see who would use it persistently, particularly for the reason that codecs and the power to edit focus factors is restricted to Apple’s personal software program.
The place I’d have favored to see some better upgrades to the digital camera is across the entrance. The 12-megapixel selfie digital camera has remained the identical for generations now, and it may actually do with a little bit extra consideration. Selfies are flat and lack the nuance of snaps taken by the rear cameras.
- A15 Bionic powers the telephone
- Wider 5G band help
- 4GB RAM, 128GB base storage
Apple’s silicon is now previous the purpose the place it’s legitimate to say a brand new chip makes the telephone really feel sooner. iPhones have felt quick for years now, and the developments to the A15 are far past upping some benchmark scores or making net pages load sooner.
The A15 Bionic powers the Cinematic mode with its focus racking and continuously altering blur results. It additionally powers stuff just like the ridiculously helpful Dwell Textual content function, which may pull addresses and telephone numbers out of your photograph library.
Contained in the chip is a six-core CPU, four-core GPU and a 16-core neural engine for AI duties. Curiously, Apple has kitted out the Professional fashions with a five-core GPU – though I didn’t discover any actual variations via testing. The A15 Bionic is paired with 4GB of RAM, which is similar to the iPhone 13 and 2GB lower than the Professional fashions.
The iPhone 13 is quick in all duties you throw at it. I’ve tried numerous Apple Arcade titles and so they all run with no hitch, whereas apps open immediately. Whereas I’d anticipate such efficiency on a far cheaper telephone than this, it’s nonetheless price noting.
There’s a wider number of 5G bands this 12 months due to a brand new 5G modem. For those who’re within the USA then the iPhone 13 additionally helps mmWave 5G – a sooner model of the tech that solely actually works whenever you’re very near the masts. mmWave isn’t a factor within the UK, nor many different areas but, so the tech is solely simply lacking from these iPhone fashions.
One very welcome change is the bounce as much as 128GB for the bottom mannequin, doubling the earlier 64GB mannequin. There’s additionally 256GB (the one I’d suggest) and a 512GB choice.
- A lot better battery life than the iPhone 12
- Doesn’t include a charging plug
- Can cost wired at 20w or wirelessly via MagSafe at 15w
Battery life has seen one of many largest upgrades within the iPhone 13, and it’s been achieved via the inclusion of bigger cells and a extra environment friendly chipset.
Apple claims an additional two hours of video playback, and whereas that is one thing of a pointless metric except you actually do exactly stream video all day, I’ve discovered it does equate to a few additional hours of use earlier than a cost is required.
All through testing, I’ve been making an attempt to deplete the telephone’s battery in a day. I ran a looped video that took 21 hours for the battery to die (greater than Apple’s claimed 19 hours) whereas streamed video lasted for 15 hours. An hour of Netflix streaming in HDR at 100% brightness consumed 9% (7%, with a extra cheap 75% brightness), whereas an hour of enjoying Sayonara Wild Hearts solely took off 11%.
I’m not going to say that is the most effective battery life I’ve seen on a telephone, however it’s definitely much better than the battery life I skilled with the iPhone 12.
For charging, you’ll nonetheless want to offer your personal plug (though a cable is included within the very slim field), or choose up both a MagSafe charger or one other Qi-enabled pad.
Apple might need switched to USB-C throughout its laptops and nearly all of iPads, however it nonetheless makes use of Lightning for the iPhone. You probably have loads of iPhone equipment mendacity round then that is nice; however USB-C is simply a lot sooner for each information switch and charging that it does really feel like a miss.
Charging speeds will doubtless depend upon the kind of charger you’re utilizing. All iPhone 13 fashions help as much as 20W quick wired charging, and utilizing this you’ll get to round 50% in half an hour.
Must you purchase it?
You haven’t upgraded in a couple of years: The iPhone 13 takes all of the iPhone 12’s nice options and provides in a greater digital camera, extra video modes and much better battery life.
You need the quickest display screen: If a 120Hz display screen is in your record, then this isn’t the telephone for you. We might counsel going for the iPhone 13 Professional as a substitute.
Much more than a 12 months after its preliminary launch, the iPhone 13 nonetheless represents a wonderful alternative, much more when the pretty minor updates added to the iPhone 14 are considered. If you could find this on a deal round an enormous buying day or a sale then it’s much more of a advice.
The digital camera is nice, the efficiency remains to be sturdy and the battery life is about on par with the newer mannequin. You do lose out on among the security options launched with the iPhone 14, however that’s about it.
How we check
We check each cell phone we evaluate totally. We use business commonplace checks to match options correctly and we use the telephone as our major machine over the evaluate interval. We’ll all the time let you know what we discover and we by no means, ever, settle for cash to evaluate a product.
Used as our major handset throughout check interval
Digital camera examined in number of conditions with all modes
Examined with artificial benchmarks and actual world use
You may like…
Nope, ProMotion is just for the iPhone 13 Professional and Professional Max
There’s a cable within the field however no charging plug
The iPhone 13 is available in 128GB, 256GB and 512GB
Trusted Opinions check information
All of the check information we acquired from the iPhone 13
Geekbench 5 single core
Geekbench 5 multi core
1 hour video playback (Netflix, HDR)
30 minute gaming (intensive)
30 minute gaming (gentle)
1 hour music streaming (on-line)
1 hour music streaming (offline)
Time from 0-100% cost
Time from 0-50% cost
All of the iPhone 13 specs you should learn about
Rear Digital camera
Entrance Digital camera
First Reviewed Date
128GB, 256GB, 512GB
12MP + 12MP
71.5 x 7.65 x 146.7 MM
2532 x 1170
Black, Crimson, Pink, Blu, Starlight
12MP Major, 12MP Extremely Vast
71.5 x 7.8 x 146.7 MM
2532 x 1170
A15 Bionic Chip
Midnight, Purple, Starlight, Product Crimson, Blue
An abbreviation for milliampere-hour and a approach to categorical the capability of batteries, particularly smaller ones in telephones. Typically the upper the mAh, the longer the battery will final however this isn’t all the time the case.
Providing sooner obtain and add speeds when in comparison with 4G. Nice for recreation streaming and HDR video playback. Not supported in every single place but and speeds range wildly.
The working system that powers Apple’s cell gadgets.