On September 21, major foreign publications published reviews of the iPhone 13 smartphones
unveiled in the middle of the month. We've selected highlights from The Verge, Wired, TechRadar,
Engadget and CNBC.
iPhone 13 and 13 mini
The smartphones have a few notable differences from their predecessors. The rear camera unit is
thicker and the modules are now placed diagonally to accommodate the new wide angle sensor. The
thickness of the smartphones themselves has also increased slightly, while the notch for Face ID and
front-facing camera has been reduced by 20% horizontally.
All reviewers agreed that these changes have little impact on the overall smartphone experience
when transitioning from last year's models. There is no particular sense of newness as far as design is
concerned, as the changes are small.
Both smartphones get 60Hz OLED displays, which are 28% brighter than before. The difference in
brightness can indeed be noticed on a sunny day, for example, but none of the reviewers called it
The iPhone 13 and 13 mini feature the next-generation A15 Bionic processor. The chip is, as
reviewers expected, fast, and neither of them had any performance complaints. Dieter Bohn also
compared the speed of the regular iPhone 13 with the Pro models, which have a processor with one
additional video core, but did not notice any difference between the devices.
Journalists liked the new pink body colour of the iPhone 13 and 13 mini, and some of them even
called it the best colour of the lineup.
According to The Verge editor Dieter Bohn, the main changes over the iPhone 12 are battery life and
improved picture quality. These are what Apple has emphasised in the base models of the iPhone 13.
The battery life of the smartphones has been rated positively in all the reviews. Compared to
previous models, the battery capacity in the iPhone 13 mini has increased by 9% and the iPhone 13
by 15.1%. Due to this, according to the specifications, the smartphones began to work one and a half
and two and a half hours longer respectively. In practice this is the case – the devices are able to last
from early morning until late evening even with heavy use.
Reviewers have praised the increased battery life of the iPhone 13 mini the most, as one of the main
drawbacks of the 12 mini is its low battery life. The new model fixes this flaw, while retaining the
The devices got an identical set of two main cameras, a wide-angle and an ultra-wide-angle. Apple
has upgraded both sensors, giving most attention to the wide-angle one – it's exactly the same in the
smartphones as in the iPhone 12 Pro Max, with optical image stabilisation technology shifting the
The devices are expected to shoot better than their predecessors: photos and videos come out sharp
and saturated. The difference is particularly noticeable in night mode, which features improved
colour reproduction with a slight tendency towards yellowing, which several reviewers have noticed.
All four of Apple's new 2021 smartphones include support for Photo Styles and Cinema Effect. The
former allows you to customise each shot by applying sets of settings to scenes and objects. Users
can choose from five styles, which vary in contrast and colour temperature.
"Movie Effect shapes depth of field when shooting movies, providing an analogue to the portrait
mode for shooting movies. It captures the main subject and blurs the rest of the scene, as with a
large aperture lens. While shooting, the user can change the focus manually, but this can also be
done in post-production.
Several reviewers were left unhappy that the smartphones didn't improve the front camera. Both
devices feature the same 12-megapixel module as previous models.
Other drawbacks include the lack of a 120Hz refresh rate screen and ceramic back protection.