Full iPhone 13 Feature Breakdown: Everything Rumors Say We Can Expect
With the launch of Apple's iPhone 13 lineup believed to be just a few weeks away, we have compiled all of the coherent rumors from our coverage over the past year to build a full picture of the features and upgrades coming to the company's new smartphones.
For clarity, only explicit improvements, upgrades, and new features compared to the iPhone 12 lineup are listed. It is worth noting that the rumors below are aggregated from our coverage from a wide range of sources, including leakers, analysts, and publications. The reliability of each source varies, so some of the rumored features should be taken with a pinch of salt.
Nevertheless, the overall view of the iPhone 13's rumors gives a good idea of many of the upcoming upgrades and what users can largely expect from the device when it is officially revealed in the near future.
- Thicker design around 7.57mm, up from 7.4mm on the iPhone 12 models.
- Diagonal rear camera layout on the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13, also slightly larger than previous models.
- Larger rear camera unit on the iPhone 13 Pro, around the same size as the iPhone 12 Pro Max at around 36mm by 37mm.
- Thicker camera bumps: The iPhone 12 models feature camera bumps in the range of 1.5mm to 1.7mm, while the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13 will have a thicker 2.51mm camera bump and the iPhone 13 Pro will feature a 3.65mm thick camera bump. The individual lenses are expected to protrude less within the thicker camera bumps.
- Relocated buttons, with the side button, mute button, and volume buttons moved slightly lower down.
- Darker graphite and bronze potential new color options.
- Smaller, narrower notch with the camera moved from the right to the left of the speaker, and the speaker moved up to the top edge of the display to provide more display space.
- "ProMotion" display with variable refresh rate up to 120Hz for smoother on-screen motion, facilitated by low-power LTPO backplane technology, on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max.
- Always-on display, similar to the Apple Watch, enabled by the variable refresh rate on the Pro models. The feature is expected to bring a simplified always-on lock screen with the current time and notifications.
Chip and Connectivity
- Next-generation "A15" chip bringing improved performance and efficiency, manufactured with a 5nm fabrication process.
- Faster 5G speeds due to use of the Qualcomm Snapdragon X60 third-generation 5G modem, which can aggregate 5G data from mmWave and sub-6GHz bands simultaneously for better speeds and coverage, as well consume less power and take up less internal space.
- Low earth orbit (LEO) satellite communications to make calls and send messages in emergency situations when there is no 4G or 5G coverage, but this feature may not be immediately available even if the device contains the appropriate hardware.
- Wi-Fi 6E connectivity for improved performance, lower latency, and faster data rates when using a latest-generation Wi-Fi connection.
- Wider availability of mmWave 5G models, available in regions outside the United States for the first time.
Batteries and Charging
- Reverse wireless charging functionality thanks to a "slightly bigger" wireless charging coil that could provide better thermal management and higher wattage.
- Larger batteries, which could result in longer battery life. The iPhone 13 Pro Max is said to have a 4352mAh battery, up from 3687mAh in the iPhone 12 Pro Max, while the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro will feature a 3095mAh battery, up from 2815mAh in the iPhone 12. The iPhone 13 mini is expected to include a 2406mAh battery, up from the 2227mAh battery in the iPhone 12 mini.
- Faster charging with support for 25W power adapters. The iPhone 12 models can currently only take advantage of up to 20W of charging power.
- More energy efficient chip to prolong battery life, with 15-20 percent lower power consumption to offset the battery life impact of high-refresh rate displays.
- Sensor shift stabilization on the Wide camera of all iPhone 13 models, bringing low light improvements and reduced camera shake. The feature is also rumored to be available for the Ultra Wide lens on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max.
- Larger camera sensors on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max with larger pixels, allowing the camera to accept more light for a higher-quality image.
- Improved Ultra Wide camera on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max, with autofocus instead of a fixed focal length, a six-element lens, and a ƒ/1.8 aperture to let in more light than the current ƒ/2.4 aperture lens, allowing for better performance in low-light conditions. Some sources have suggested that the ƒ/1.8 Ultra Wide camera will actually come to all iPhone 13 models.
- Improved Telephoto camera with a ƒ/2.2 aperture on the iPhone 13 Pro, bringing over the improvements and 2.5 times optical zoom that came with the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
- Improved Wide camera on the iPhone 13 Pro Max, expected to have a ƒ/1.5 aperture, which is a small increase compared to the ƒ/1.6 aperture on the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
Camera Software Features
- Cinematic Video Mode to blur the background of recorded video, similar to Portrait Mode for still photos.
- ProRes video recording with options for HD and 4K resolutions, exclusive to the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max similar to ProRAW for still photos on the iPhone 12 Pro models.
- Improved filters to enhance the look and coloring of photos, allowing users to choose from multiple styles. Filters will be applied to objects and people precisely using artificial intelligence rather than flatly enhancing the entire picture.
- Astrophotography Mode for improved night sky photography.
- Image Stabilization Correction Mode to automatically detect and keep a subject in focus while recording video.
- Improved Face ID that can authenticate users while wearing face masks or foggy glasses.
- Stronger MagSafe magnets to improve the iPhone's adherence to MagSafe accessories and chargers.
- Smudge-resistant stainless steel frame to lessen the effect of fingerprints on the polished edges of the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max.
- Up to 1TB of storage for the first time, potentially related to the space needed for ProRes video files.
If these features do come with the iPhone 13 lineup, the 2021 models could shape up to be a significant upgrade for many users. Most indications seem to be pointing to Tuesday, September 14 as the most likely event date for the announcement of the iPhone 13 models, and we could see event invites go out as soon as next week.