iPhone 13 might be definitely worth the wait: All the foremost upgrades we’re trying ahead to


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Yearly right now, there are an ever-increasing variety of rumors about the next iPhone, and 2021 isn’t any exception. The iPhone 12 family is six months old and but there are already a plethora of leaks and speculation about the next iPhone, which can be known as the iPhone 13. (Or it might be the iPhone 12S, or simply the “iPhone” just like the fourth-gen iPad. Possibly will probably be the iPhone 21 as a result of it is 2021?) 

I gathered the latest and most persistent rumors concerning the iPhone 13’s cameras, specs and options (and we have got extra intel on the iPhone 13’s rumored cost, a potential release date, and how the iPhone 13 might compare to the iPhone 12) and discovered what the iPhone 13 wants with the intention to be a hit. Think about this an iPhone 13 want checklist.

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iPhone 13 rumors and what the subsequent Apple cellphone wants


And simply to be clear, these are rumors and leaks. Nothing is for sure till Apple formally broadcasts it. A few of these rumors are from the past month. Others are a number of months and even years old and keep rising back to relevance.


The following iPhone might have an even bigger battery and perhaps an extended battery life.

Patrick Holland/CNET

iPhone 13 may get an even bigger battery

The primary rumor is that the iPhone 13 will get an even bigger battery. iPhone 12’s battery life is sweet. In use, each the iPhone 12 and 12 Professional lasted a day no drawback. In our battery take a look at with looped video enjoying in airplane mode the 12 Professional lasted 15 hours, 56 minutes and the iPhone 12 lasted 17 hours, 14 minutes.

Nevertheless it’s removed from one of the best battery life we have seen. The Samsung Galaxy S21, with its 4,500-mAh battery, lasted 18 hours and three minutes in the identical take a look at. The Galaxy S21 Extremely and its 5,000-mAh battery lasted 22 hours and 57 minutes. And each of these telephones have a excessive refresh fee show which might tax the battery much more.

Whereas Apple by no means reveals the capability of the batteries contained in the iPhone, websites like iFixIt, which sells kits to interchange batteries, present that an iPhone 12 and 12 Professional use a 2,815-mAh battery. What’s good is Apple will get a lot life from that small battery purely by the effectivity on its A-series processors and iOS.

Now think about making use of these efficiencies to a bigger bodily battery. It is a rumor that I hope is true and assume the subsequent iPhone wants. I imply, who does not need higher battery life?


The following iPhone is rumored to have a excessive refresh fee display screen which might bode nicely for making these Apple Arcade video games look even higher.

Patrick Holland/CNET

Professional Movement might come to the iPhone 13’s display screen

Since 2017, the iPad Professional has had a 120Hz refresh fee. Now that panel is an LCD, however rumors level to the iPhone 13 getting a excessive refresh fee OLED. For years, many people longed to see this function on an iPhone. There are quite a few telephones at totally different value factors which have a excessive refresh fee display screen just like the $300 OnePlus Nord N10 5G which has a 90Hz show. The brand new $800 Galaxy S21 and $1,200 S21 Ultra every have a 120Hz show. Final week, Asus launched the ROG Phone 5 that has a 144Hz screen. And final month, the RedMagic 6 phone was announced with a 165Hz screen. For comparability, the iPhone 12 has a 60Hz display screen.

Why do you want a excessive refresh fee? Merely, it makes every little thing look higher. That sweeping generalization apart, animations and graphics look sharper, movement blur is lowered, video games (particularly these designed for top refresh fee screens) appear extra immersive and vivid. Take into consideration how nice 120Hz Apple Arcade games might look.

The following iPhone wants a 120Hz display screen, a minimum of the “Professional” fashions do. It could be one other “Professional” function that helps distinguish the upper finish iPhone Professional fashions for the common and mini model.

iPad Pro Smart Connector

If there was an iPhone with out a port, might one thing just like the good connector contacts from the iPad Professional be the best way to cost it?

Patrick Holland/CNET

The following iPhone may not have any ports

There’s a persistent rumor that the iPhone 13 won’t have a Lightning port. Ever since Apple removed the headphone jack again in 2016 with the iPhone 7, folks speculated that Apple would in the future make a very portless cellphone. In December, dependable rumor-spreader Ming Chi Kuo asserted that Apple would release an iPhone in 2021 without a port.

Apple’s launch of MagSafe charging on the iPhone 12 makes it simpler to think about such a port-free future. Nevertheless, in its present type MagSafe charging tops out at 15 watts. Evaluate that to the 20-watt charging you get with a lighting-to-USB-C cable and wall charger. OnePlus has a wi-fi charger known as the Warp Charge 30 that may cost at 30 watts.

Not solely would the subsequent model of MagSafe should be extra highly effective to be an affordable substitute to a bodily charging cable, however Apple would additionally want to resolve for a few of the knowledge sharing that the Lightning port at the moment affords. Maybe Apple is hoping 5G, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0 and its U1 ultrawideband chip are these data-sharing replacements? Or perhaps there can be a model of MagSafe with a Lightning port dongle? Who is aware of?

Apple might construct into the subsequent iPhone one thing just like the “good connector” discovered on the present iPad Professional. Whereas the USB-C port on the iPad Professional will get all the eye, on the again of the iPad are three flat steel contacts. Whenever you use the Magic Keyboard accessory with the iPad Pro, it connects to the iPad through the good connector and magnets. You may even plug in a USB-C cable into the aspect of the Magic Keyboard to cost the iPad Professional. Most days through the pandemic, I just about used the Magic Keyboard to cost my iPad through the good connector.

Possibly there might be “Good MagSafe” charging on the subsequent iPhone? Even when this rumor is true, eradicating the final iPhone port just isn’t one thing Apple must do, a minimum of proper now.


Rumors level to new digital camera {hardware} throughout all 4 iPhone 13 fashions and the common Professional mannequin getting cameras on par with the Professional Max model.

Patrick Holland/CNET

New cameras might come to the subsequent iPhone

The most important function and largest rumors revolve across the cameras on the iPhone. And there are a bunch of rumors pointing to new lenses, new digital camera sensors and a wider adoption of sensor-based stabilization throughout the iPhone line up.

At the moment the iPhone 12 Professional has the identical selfie, broad and ultrawide cameras because the iPhone 12 and 12 Mini. The Professional does have a 2x telephoto digital camera, however it’s not the identical as the two.5x one on the iPhone 12 Professional Max. The iPhone 13 Professional might get a bigger sensor for its broad digital camera. This rumor does not point out whether or not will probably be precisely the identical because the one on the iPhone 13 Professional Max or not. However the bigger sensor might incorporate sensor-based stabilization, which is at the moment solely on the iPhone 12 Professional Max mannequin.

The iPhone 13 Professional can be rumored to get the identical or related telephoto digital camera because the 13 Professional Max. All which means is that the subsequent common “Professional” mannequin might be nearer to the Professional Max mannequin. Whereas this yr, the 12 and 12 Professional are exceedingly related.

There are a couple of rumors a couple of new ultrawide digital camera both on the iPhone 13, or iPhone 14. (Sure, there are already rumors concerning the subsequent subsequent iPhone!) The ultrawide digital camera on the 13 may get higher low-light efficiency and a sooner aperture lens. At the moment the lens on the ultrawide is f2.4, however the brand new lens might be f1.8, which definitely would assist in direction of enhancing low-light efficiency.

By way of digital camera {hardware}, the iPhone 13, particularly the common Professional mannequin, might use these rumored upgrades. 


An in-screen fingerprint scanner might resolve our iPhone Face ID woes.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Contact ID might return to the iPhone

The iPhone 13 might get an under-the-display fingerprint reader. Because the first Android cellphone got here out with an in-screen fingerprint reader, folks speculated that an under-the-display Contact ID sensor can be a technique to alleviate the frustration some get utilizing Face ID (and this was earlier than the pandemic made face masks an on a regular basis factor).

At the moment on Android telephones, there are two varieties of in display screen fingerprint sensors. There are optical in-screen sensors discovered on telephones just like the OnePlus 8T and Motorola Edge Plus. Then there are ultrasonic fingerprint readers by Qualcomm on telephones just like the Galaxy S21 collection.

If the iPhone 13 will get an in-screen fingerprint reader, it isn’t clear whether or not this is able to substitute Face ID or be along with it. The rumor additionally suggests together with a 2019 patent illustration Apple filed that the iPhone might be unlocked with a fingerprint contact anyplace on the display screen as a substitute of the one sensor location on Android telephones.

If Apple might get ultrasonic sensors to a degree of reliability, ease of use and dependability like the old-school Touch ID sensor found on the iPhone SE, it isn’t laborious to think about them on an iPhone. And if Contact ID is paired with Face ID, you possibly can have extra methods to safe and entry your cellphone. Having an alternate biometric safety measure is one thing the iPhone wants.


There might be a video model of portrait mode on the iPhone 13.

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The iPhone 13 might shoot portrait mode video

The following iPhone might file portrait mode video. You may be acquainted with portrait mode which helps you to take a photograph and provides the image an artist blurry background. The thought is it replicates what a bigger sensor mirrorless or DSLR digital camera can do with a quick aperture lens. On the iPhone, portrait mode is proscribed to simply photographs. However at the moment there are a number of Android telephones just like the Samsung Galaxy line that can record portrait mode video (or live focus video), which blur out the background whereas leaving your topic in focus. In my expertise, the outcomes are very hit-or-miss.

It’s thrilling to assume what Apple might do with portrait mode video and the way it handles all of the processing wanted to separate the foreground and artistically blur the background. The rumor additionally factors to the power to alter the depth of discipline (the quantity of background that’s blurred) after the video is already shot. It could be particularly cool if it additionally included Apple’s portrait lighting appears to be like and the power to alter these up after the very fact. Although as enjoyable as portrait mode video can be, it isn’t one thing the iPhone wants.

The Pixel 4's Night Sight mode can photograph the Milky Way and individual stars -- if the sky is clear enough.

The Pixel 4 was the primary cellphone with a hidden astrophotography function in its Evening Sight mode. It makes use of computational images and lengthy seize occasions to seize pictures like this of the Milky Means.


The iPhone 13 may get higher at astrophotography

The final rumor I need to spotlight is one other digital camera function. The iPhone 13 may get a greater astrophotography mode. At the moment, you possibly can mount the iPhone on a tripod and within the darkest situations lengthen the night time mode seize to as much as 30 seconds. Below the appropriate sky and climate, you possibly can seize an honest picture of a starry sky. However once you see what the Google Pixel can do in terms of astrophotography, it leaves lots to be desired on the iPhone.

If this rumor is true, perhaps astrophotography nonetheless will get activated in night time mode however you possibly can lengthen time greater than 30 seconds or use computational images to seize a greater night time sky or moon? This might be one other function that lives solely on “Professional” fashions like the best way Apple ProRaw at the moment does. That is undoubtedly not a wanted function, however a pleasant one to have one.

For extra on the subsequent iPhone, read our iPhone 13 rumor roundup.

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