The Apple iPhone 12 series may only be a few months old, but we already hear dozens of rumors about the iPhone 13 series and a possible launch event in September. The iPhone 12 represented a big change for the iPhone lineup, with an entirely new design, improved cameras, and more – but if rumors are to be believed, the iPhone 13 could be even more exciting.
Here’s everything we know about the iPhone 13 so far.
iPhone 13 design
The iPhone 12 series brought big design changes to the iPhone, largely due to the more blocky design inspired by the iPhone 4 and iPhone 5. Because of this, we don’t expect many changes to the overall design and look of the iPhone 13 – but we did see a few tweaks.
The latest leaks about the iPhone 13 come from serial leaker Jon Prosser, who says he’s received CAD renders of the upcoming iPhone 13. The renderings show a new diagonal camera layout for non-Pro iPhone models as well as a slightly thicker construction to accommodate a larger battery. They also seem to show a smaller notch on the device.
Rumors suggest that Apple will likely switch to a port-free iPhone at some point. Many experts see Apple’s decision to bring MagSafe charging to the iPhone as a first step towards that change. However, this is unlikely to happen to the iPhone 13. While rumors said at least one model will forego ports, and well-known TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in 2019 that Apple would release a portless iPhone in 2021, recent reports suggest that Apple is at the proven Lightning port for another year.
Another persistent rumor has it that the iPhone will get a smaller notch. Some rumors suggest that Apple wanted to add a smaller notch to the iPhone 12 as part of its new design but couldn’t – and is instead targeting the iPhone 13 for that change. It’s unlikely the notch has gone entirely, but Ice Universe, a well-known leaker on Twitter, says the notch will be shallower. An Everything Apple Pro leak suggests the notch will be narrower rather than shallower, and Unbox Therapy has managed to get their hands on a dummy iPhone 13 Pro Max device that might show off that smaller notch design.
The iPhone 13 is originally supposed to bring back the Touch ID. The pandemic has proven that facial recognition, while cool, doesn’t always make sense – for example, when you’re wearing a mask. Apple reportedly considered an in-display fingerprint sensor, according to Bloomberg, but a later report from the publication added that the company was unlikely to ship it this year.
Last but not least, the iPhone 13 can come in a few different colors. According to EverythingApplePro and Max Weinbach, the iPhone 13 series could be available in a matte black that is darker than the graphite color currently offered on the iPhone 12 Pro. Other recent rumors suggest that at least some iPhone 13 models will appear in a new rose pink.
iPhone 13 display
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends
The iPhone 12 brought OLED display technology to the entire iPhone 12 series, and therefore the display experience is more or less the same on all iPhone 12 models. In 2021, however, Apple could give the iPhone 13 Pro models another step in the form of a refresh rate of 120 Hz.
Rumors of high refresh rate iPhones have been circulating for years, and there was a time when many experts thought it was coming on the iPhone 12 12.According to Korean website The Elec, Apple is now introducing LTPO technology into the iPhone 13 – Build in models that would pave the way for high refresh rates when needed and lower refresh rates at other times. This was confirmed in a leak by Weinbach, which stated that the iPhone 13 will have a 120Hz display and that it will actually be an always-on display, similar to what we’ve seen on some Android phones. Weinbach says that the always-on display will look like a “weakened lock screen” and will always show the time and battery level. Notifications are also displayed, but supposedly only part of the screen lights up to show the notification. A later report by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman gave credibility to the always-on display feature.
The standard models of iPhone 13 are unlikely to receive the high refresh rate technology. Hopefully, however, they all get it in the iPhone 14 series.
iPhone 13 specifications
There aren’t too many rumors about the iPhone 13’s specs under the hood, but there are a few. According to Jon Prosser, some of the iPhone 13 prototypes offer a whopping 1TB of storage space, which is twice the maximum capacity of the iPhone 12.
Some other assumptions can be made about the iPhone 13’s specs. In particular, the iPhone 13 is likely to use a new Apple A15 chip that is expected to stick to a 5nm process. Apple invests billions in its chip manufacturing, with much of that research being used for laptop-class processors like the M1. However, the iPad Pro has seen a performance boost with the addition of the M1 – and while the iPhone is unlikely to get an M-series chip, the A-series will likely still get a performance boost and the tradition of being the top performing mobile chip in the game. According to a DigiTimes report, chipmaker TSMC will continue to build the A-series of chips for the iPhone 13.
Regarding the larger battery mentioned above, a report from Trendforce (via Pocket-Lint) in mid-August said that Apple isn’t really going to make its iPhones thicker or heavier, but instead will rely on clever tech and tweaking its circuit board design, so that a larger battery fits in the same chassis. When it comes to the exact numbers, ZDNet reports that the battery capacity of the iPhone 13 Pro Max will increase from 3,687 mAh to 4,352 mAh. The publication also states that the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 will now share a 3095 mAh battery instead of a 2,815 mAh battery, with the iPhone 13 Mini using a 2406 mAh battery in place of the 2227 battery. mAh batteries in the 12 mini is delivered.
iPhone 13 cameras
The iPhone 12 didn’t get that big a camera upgrade when compared to the iPhone 11 series, but it was still a step up, especially when it comes to the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s larger sensors and sensor-shift technology. Hopefully, this tech will also be available on lower-priced iPhones in 2021, and rumors back it up. A rumor from display analyst Ross Young is that all iPhone 13 devices will get the same sensors as the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
However, another rumor suggests a different upgrade. According to a Barclays investor note, all four iPhone 13 models will get an ultrawide camera with an f / 1.8 aperture. It’s important to note that Kuo denies this, saying that only the iPhone 13 Pro models will get a larger opening. However, Kuo says the ultrawide camera will get autofocus for the first time, which will be a big upgrade for the camera. Kuo’s report is backed by a later report from TrendForce that said the iPhone 13 Pro models will have autofocus, but Apple will bring it to all 2022 models.
Weinbach says the iPhone 13 will have a stronger focus on astrophotography, and it’s supposed to be an automatic mode that the iPhone can switch to. Weinbach also claims that the iPhone will be able to record videos in portrait orientation and users can adjust the bokeh effect after recording videos. That report was later confirmed by Bloomberg, who added that Apple is naming this cinematic video. Apple is also planning to expand its video recording arsenal with ProRes support, a format that enables more powerful optimizations to recorded videos. It’s essentially a video version of ProRaw that was brought to iPhones last year and has been a standard on non-mobile platforms for creative people for years.
Other rumors suggest that Apple could add a lidar sensor to all four iPhone 13 models, which could help speed autofocus in low-light conditions and play a role in future augmented reality (AR) technology.
How many iPhone 13 models will there be?
With the iPhone 13, Apple will allegedly duplicate the iPhone 12 product line. This means that we can expect an iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max, as well as an iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini. According to reports from analysts like Trendforce, the company plans to focus on the larger iPhones as the company found initial sales of the iPhone Mini disappointing.
Is it really going to be called iPhone 13?
According to some reports, Apple will refer to the iPhone as the iPhone 12S in 2021, with Trendforce saying the company sees the 2021 series as an extension of the 2020 iPhone 12 series. There are also unfortunate cultural associations with the number 13 being raised. On the flip side, a new report by the Economic Daily News, citing supply chain sources, states that Apple will actually refer to the iPhone as the iPhone 13 with a view to launch in September in 2021.
IPhone 13 pricing and release date
The phones are expected to be priced similar to the iPhone 12 series. Though Apple launched the iPhone 12 in October, it traditionally launches new models in September – and as long as the supply chain problems don’t persist, then we expect the iPhone 13 to be released. A Wedbush analyst predicted that the iPhone 13 would hit the market on September 14th, contrary to Apple’s trend of holding its iPhone events on Tuesdays. It’s also a good sign for the supply chain that Apple still expects to ship more iPhones than usual and order a production run of 90 million iPhones instead of the usual 75 million.