It’s rumor season, and no rumors carry more weight than an iPhone rumor. With murmurs surrounding the iPhone 13 since last year (we wish we were joking) just after the iPhone 12 launched, we’re now coming up on the homestretch. After a trail of leak crumbs, a recent leak from a prominent insider has revealed the alleged dates for the iPhone 13 event, pre-order, and launch date. Let’s not waste another minute.
When can I get the iPhone 13?
News of the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro’s release has been corroborated by Jon Prosser, who has sources within Apple. According to Prosser, the iPhone 13 will be available for pre-order on September 17 and launch a week later on September 24, “confirming” the same dates revealed by Chinese e-commerce site IT-Home. Working backwards, Prosser says the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro will be revealed at an Apple event on September 14; media invites are expected to go on September 7.
While Prosser has a good reputation for getting Apple leaks right, there are still over two weeks until the event happens, and anything can change. However, it’s routine that the iPhone is revealed in September so there's a good chance that we could be seeing Tim Cook unveil the latest flagship in three weeks. But you don’t have to wait that long to learn more about the iPhone 13.
Is the iPhone 13 getting a new chip?
MacRumors reported back in April that Taiwanese chipmaker TSMC had already begun producing the new A15 Bionic chip for the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPhone 13 mini. Similar to the A14 Bionic chip inside the iPhone 12 lineup, the A15 Bionic is said to be based on a 5-nanometer process, but reportedly uses an updated process. This is Apple silicon so expect performance gains for both the CPU and GPU. How much more powerful the A13 Bionic chip is compared to the A12 Bionic we don’t know.
One concerning thing about the chips is that TSMC is raising its chip prices by 10 to 20 percent, which could impact the cost of the iPhone 13 lineup. A price increase for the iPhone 13 series hasn’t leaked yet, but you better bet the rumored 1TB iPhone 13 Pro storage capacity would command more money.
Will the iPhone 13 design look different?
A little bit. Leaks show the regular iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini will have a rearranged dual-lens camera system that’s diagonal instead of vertical. It’s been speculated that all of the iPhone 13 phones will have a thicker and wider camera bump to make room for a sensor-shift stabilization sensor for capturing more stable footage; the iPhone 12 Pro Max is currently the only iPhone with this sensor-shift image stabilization. If true, the iPhone 13 phones may be up to 0.2mm thicker to accommodate for a larger battery (more on that below). It also appears that the notch may shrink by 25 percent according to one leak. Other than that, you can expect an iPhone 13 lineup that plays it safe with a design that mostly resembles the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 mini.
Will the iPhone 13 display get a 120Hz refresh rate and LTPO?
According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, the iPhone 13 Pro will feature an always-on display. It’s something that Apple has already done with the Apple Watch since Series 5, and it’s now reportedlt coming to the iPhone 13 with the use of new display technology. Low-powered LTPO OLED displays supplied by Samsung are believed to be coming to the higher-end iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max. The new displays on the iPhone 13 Pros will reportedly come with a 120Hz refresh rate, finally bringing the iPad Pro’s “ProMotion” feature to the iPhone lineup.
Will the iPhone 13 have a better battery life?
The physical capacity of batteries in iPhone batteries can’t compare to what you get in Android phones. But a leak from June points to every iPhone 13 in the lineup getting a bump in battery size. Combined with the new A15 Bionic chip, which is expected to be more power-efficient, the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPhone 13 mini may have the best battery life to date. Lord knows the iPhone 12 series — especially the iPhone 12 mini — can gulp down battery fast with 5G turned on.
Will the iPhone 13 have Touch ID?
While there was chatter that Apple was working on bringing back Touch ID to the iPhone, it seems those plans were scrapped. It’s believed that Apple wanted to place the fingerprint sensor under the display — a feature in Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy S21, OnePlus 9 Pro, and the soon-to-be-announced Google Pixel 6, allegedly.
The under-display fingerprint scanner would have been a nice addition, especially when Face ID is unusable when wearing a mask (unless you have an Apple Watch). However, a recent leak shed light on a new development that could fix the Face ID mask issue. Apple is reportedly training its machine learning to recognize users even with their masks on. How well that works and whether or not it will make it to the iPhone 13 is unclear.