23:04 | 14/02/2021 Print
|iPhone 13 (2021) latest news. Photo: Wccftech|
The mobile phone world has turned its attention to the iPhone 13 in 2021 and the three other variants expected to join the lineup: the iPhone 13 Mini, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPhone 13 Pro Max, according to CNet.
Rumors were circulating about Apple's 2021 phone lineup even before the last Apple event, which unveiled the iPhone 12. And the leaks are only going to ramp up as we get closer to the next iPhone release date. Read on to find the latest rumors about the iPhone 13's price, design, release date, and more. We'll update this story as new information becomes available.
Right off the bat, it’s unclear whether this year’s iPhone will be called the iPhone 12s or the iPhone 13. A report has said that Apple is internally referring to this year as an “S” year upgrade, which implies minor changes compared to the existing iPhone 12.
That doesn’t mean, however, that Apple will use “iPhone 12s” as the marketing name for the 2021 iPhone lineup. It’s possible that this year’s devices are referred to as the iPhone 12s or iPhone 13, or that Apple decides that 2021 is the year it’s moving away from the numbers altogether. This would follow in the footsteps of what Apple has done with the iPad lineup over the years.
Latest iPhone 13 news (updated February 10)
No leaked renders or grainy videos have emerged yet, but we don't expect any big changes to the iPhone's design in 2021, considering 2020 saw a pretty significant "slabular" redesign already with the return of the iPhone 5's flat sides. Apple is also not expected to make any changes to the phone's sizing from the previous generation.
iPhone 13's rumored sizes:
Two potential design elements that are getting some decent buzz already: A shallower notch or completely notch-less screen and the death of the Lightning port, both of which have been speculated about, hoped for, or dreaded ad nauseum for generations of iPhones.
According to a report in Bloomberg, Apple is working on offering an in-display fingerprint sensor for the iPhone 13. This would be in addition to Face ID.
A separate report in the Wall Street Journal details that Apple will be using a new in-screen optical fingerprint sensor to pull off Touch ID. Samsung phones use an ultrasonic reader, but the claim is that the optical variety could be more accurate in Apple's implementation.
Cupertino has never released an iPhone with both Face ID and Touch ID, but analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also claims that Apple is looking into adding an in-screen fingerprint sensor to its 2021 devices.
|Photo: Tom's Guide|
Kuo noted that Apple viewed both biometric technologies as complementary, with the potential to work well together, so we could potentially see the iPhone 13 sport Face ID and Touch ID. Given that the current version of Face ID can't recognize people with masks, and Apple updated its iOS software to better accommodate users with face masks, we suspect that the company has to at least be thinking about how to bring back Touch ID in a sleeker way.
A patent unearthed by AppleInsider sheds light on how Cupertino might be able to pull that off, with a sophisticated in-display system that uses an array of microlenses to focus on a subject's fingerprint. Theoretically, this would improve readability that is typically diminished by screen translucency.
Reports have also suggested that 2021 could be the year that Apple introduces an iPhone without a Lightning port. This would be the first-ever port-less iPhone, and most recently, Bloomberg reported it as something being tested internally at Apple.
It’s unclear whether it’s something that Apple will launch this year, but Ming-Chi Kuo also predicted in 2019 that Apple would launch an iPhone without a Lightning port in 2021.
Best iPhone charging accessories:
The iPhone got some pretty well-received camera upgrades in 2020, especially in the Pro Max model, which introduced the iOS crowd to lidar (also found on the Pro) and ProRaw. The iPhone 12 even wrested CNET photo enthusiast Stephen Shankland's loyalty away from Google Pixel, the erstwhile computational photography king.
Better zoom capabilities for the iPhone 13
One weak spot in the 2020 lineup's camera offerings, however, was zoom technology. The iPhone 12 Pro Max only featured a 2.5x optical zoom -- for comparison, Samsung's Galaxy S20 Ultra and now the S21 Ultra both offer a 100x zoom (though it is a mix of optical and digital).
According to ETNews (as reported by TechRadar), the iPhone 13 could potentially include a periscope camera, a technology that would allow for a larger zoom range without requiring an even larger camera bump. Kuo made similar predictions for a future periscope lens, though his report hinted that we may have to wait until 2022. It's also possible that the 2.5x zoom found on the iPhone 12 Pro Max could trickle down to the next iPhone's Pro model, 9to5mac cites.
Improved night mode photos
New rumors in early February hint at welcome improvements for low-light photography. Analysts are predicting an ultrawide-angle lens with a larger aperture -- f/1.8, instead of f/2.4. A larger aperture means more light can hit the sensor, which makes for better photos at nighttime or in low-light situations.
You get lidar, you get lidar, everyone gets lidar!
All four models of the iPhone 13 lineup could include lidar technology, according to a DigiTimes report. Lidar was introduced to the iPhone in 2020, but only on the Pro and Pro Max models, so this would only be a true upgrade for the basic model and the Mini. Still, lidar for everyone would be pretty nifty -- the camera feature, which stands for "light detection and ranging," is a depth sensor that uses lasers to measure distance. The camera trick can take your iPhone photos to the next level, and it also has some pretty cool AR applications.
Many high-end Androids have a high refresh rate 120Hz screens. The iPhone 12 series, on the other hand, has 60Hz displays. Apparently, Apple held off switching to the new technology in 2020 because of the negative effect on battery life, but the 2021 iPhone Pro and Pro Max models are likely to adopt 120Hz displays. This would allow smoother animations and faster reaction times - and an always-on function could finally arrive.
Reports suggest Apple will use LTPO OLED displays for this. Among other things these displays support the adaptive image frequency without requiring additional hardware. The panels will come exclusively from Samsung and are already used in the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. LG was also considered as a supplier, but according to The Elec, LG will not be able to deliver LTPO OLED screens in large quantities until 2022. Therefore, it is assumed that only the two Pro models of the upcoming iPhone 13 series will be equipped with an LTPO display that supports 120 Hertz.
The cheaper iPhone 13 models will probably offer a conventional OLED screen and continue to work with 60Hz.
As soon as LG comes into play as an additional supplier of LTPO displays, the standard iPhones will likely gain adaptive refresh rates of up to 120 Hertz. This feature is likely to come to all new iPhones in 2022. Read more about what this superior screen tech will bring to the iPhone here: Display expert offers reasons to wait for the iPhone 13.
Apple is already using a ProMotion display in the iPad Pro, which increases the refresh rate to 120Hz.
5G connectivity was one of the headlining features of the iPhone 12 last year, but only US iPhone 12 models support mmWave 5G, likely because of the added expense for Apple.
This year, a report has already suggested that Apple has added an additional supplier of mmWave 5G antennas and is placing “a large order” for these in anticipation of the iPhone 13. This implies that Apple could be planning to expand mmWave 5G beyond the US versions of the iPhone 12 to the rest of the world.
iPhone 13: Release date and price
The iPhone 13 release date is expected to be set for September 2021, but that may be subject to change given the Covid-19 pandemic.
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro were pushed back to October, and the other two devices – the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max – were released in November, reportedly due to a lack of parts for the manufacturing process.
We'd expect these to cost the same as the iPhone 12 range, so $699, $799, $999, and $1,099, respectively. Apple tends to keep its pricing structure fairly rigid from generation to generation, so we're not expecting any increase to the sticker price, Tom's Guide cites.
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