How iPhone 13 might compare to iPhone 12: Rumored features, cameras and more – CNET

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The iPhone 12 and the iPhone 12 Pro Max, released last year.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

It might feel like the iPhone 12 just launched, but Apple fans are already looking forward to the launch of the iPhone 13, which we expect to see in September. Whether you just upgraded to the iPhone 12 or are debating whether you should wait for Apple’s 2021 flagship, you may be wondering how the iPhone 13 will stack up. We’ve collected all of the early rumors around the iPhone 13’s specs, including cameras, display size and resolution, and the four different models that could be on the horizon, to help you plan your potential purchase. 

Here are the rumors we’ve heard so far about the iPhone 13 specs, and how they might compare to the iPhone 12. To be clear, none of the iPhone 13 specs have been confirmed by Apple.

Read more: iPhone 12 vs. iPhone 11 and The best iPhone you can buy in 2021

Four iPhone 13 models

Like the iPhone 12, the iPhone 13 will come in four models, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo: the iPhone 13, the iPhone 13 Mini, the iPhone 13 Pro and the iPhone 13 Pro Max. 


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Price

The iPhone 13 isn’t expected to be a major technical upgrade from the iPhone 12, which was the first to include 5G support. Because of this, analysts are predicting that the iPhone 13 will cost around the same as the iPhone 12, the base version of which starts at $799. It’s also possible that Apple may lower the price of the iPhone 13, as others did after the economic downturn of 2020, such as Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE and Google’s Pixel 5. The newly released Samsung Galaxy S21 also boasted a lower price tag, starting at $200 lower than its predecessor.

Here’s the iPhone 12’s US pricing, for reference: 

iPhone 12 US pricing

iPhone 12 model 64GB 128GB 256GB 512GB
iPhone 12 Mini (carrier model) $699 $749 $849 N/A
iPhone 12 Mini (SIM-free from Apple) $729 $779 $879 N/A
iPhone 12 (carrier model) $799 $849 $949 N/A
iPhone 12 (SIM-free from Apple) $829 $879 $979 N/A
iPhone 12 Pro N/A $999 $1,099 $1,299
iPhone 12 Pro Max N/A $1,099 $1,199 $1,399

Increased refresh rates

Most phones (including the iPhone 12) refresh at 60 frames per second, or 60Hz, but some, like the Galaxy S21 and the OnePlus 8 Pro, refresh at 120Hz. There is speculation that the iPhone 13’s display will have a 120Hz refresh rate (and an always-on OLED display). The higher the refresh rate, the faster and smoother a phone feels when scrolling through apps and websites. While this was rumored for the iPhone 12 as well, it seems more likely to happen this time around.

Better cameras

The iPhone 12 camera array includes regular, ultrawide and selfie cameras, night mode photos on all cameras, improved HDR mode, a telephoto lens (on the Pro and Pro Max models) and 2.5x zoom (on the Pro Max only).

As is typically the case with new iPhones, you can expect the iPhone 13’s cameras to be upgraded over the iPhone 12. We’ve heard rumors of an added periscope camera to improve zoom, an improved ultrawide-angle lens for night mode photography, and lidar technology on all models, instead of just the Pro and Pro Max, as was the case with the iPhone 12.

Touch ID

The iPhone 13 could bring back Touch ID for the first time since the iPhone 8, with a big difference: It might be embedded under the screen, instead of as a separate button that takes up phone real estate. Some were expecting this to happen with the iPhone 12, but had also said it could get pushed to the next model. Alas, the iPhone 12 lineup lacks a Touch ID button. It’s worth noting that Apple’s 2020 iPad Air integrated a Touch ID button onto the side of the device. This would be a great addition this year in particular, since Face ID doesn’t work when wearing a mask

Lightning port and headphone jack

The iPhone 12 doesn’t have a headphone jack, and we don’t expect any iPhone 13 models to have one either. But the Lightning port may be another story, now that Apple has introduced MagSafe charging capabilities. Kuo predicts that the iPhone 13 models will still include Lightning ports, with the exception of the iPhone 13 Pro Max, which could be completely portless. The iPhone 12, by contrast, featured a Lightning port on all four models.

For more, check out our review of the iPhone 12, and the best ways to sell or trade in your old iPhone.

Rumored Apple iPhone 13 vs. iPhone 12 specs

iPhone 13 iPhone 12
Display size 6.1-inch OLED 6.1-inch OLED
Refresh rate 120Hz 60Hz
Cameras Regular, ultrawide, selfie, periscope Regular, ultrawide, selfie, telephoto (Pro Max)
Fingerprint sensor Yes No
Connector Lightning, except in Pro Max Lightning
Headphone jack No No
Price (US) $799 $799

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