In case you missed it, the latest iPhone — iPhone 13 — dropped on September 24 with a slew of new and improved features. Since I got my hands on a device not long after the launch — a regular iPhone 13, though it also comes in Mini, Pro and Pro Max — I thought might be worth sharing my thoughts.
Because sure, you can read about everything new it can do on Apple’s website or, if you’re not in lockdown, test it out in a store yourself, but what you really want to know is — is it worth it? And, as someone who just had the iPhone 12 and isn’t super tech-y, but appreciates cool, new features (meaning I’m not going to throw a bunch of fancy tech jargon at you), I’m one of the best people to ask.
So, firstly, here are the two new features I think are most notable.
This new video mode is definitely the biggest new feature of the iPhone 13. It shifts the focus from one subject to another when you’re shooting video. In other words, you can have different subjects clear (in focus) while the background is blurry. I’ve mostly been using it for Instastory clips. For instance, I filmed a recent picnic set-up and as I panned over the food, it put the strawberries in focus and the background blurred, then the olives, then the crackers.
Better Battery Life
Like most people, I use my phone a lot. I’m always scrolling through my apps, reading my emails or Slack messages, texting my friends and family or taking photos or videos. And, because of that, unsurprisingly, my phone’s battery drains quickly. The iPhone 13 has a battery life of more than 10 hours, while the 12 had about 8.5 hours. It’s not noticeable, but I like knowing my phone will last that little bit longer.
Is It Worth Upgrading to the iPhone 13?
To be honest, the iPhone 13 isn’t hugely different to the 12. It’s definitely better, of course, with all the new features I’ve mentioned above (plus, the camera is better in low light, you can take photos in different photographic styles and the camera now comes in five colours — I got it the new pink), but I’d say it’s not worth upgrading from 12 to 13 unless you have a need for the Cinematic Mode, like if you film a lot of video content for work or are really passionate about video.
Though, in saying that, Apple does have a good trade-in programme so you can trade-in your device (provided it doesn’t have any damages) for credit for your next purchase. If you have an iPhone 12, you can get up to $745 in an Apple gift card or towards your iPhone 13. So, if your iPhone 12 isn’t cracked and you’re considering upgrading, it might be worth it as you can trade-in your old phone while it retains more of its value and get an iPhone 13 for just the cost of the difference.