Apple unveils iPhone 13, adds new features to iPads, watches

WION Web Team
BangaloreUpdated: Sep 15, 2021, 12:08 AM IST

iPhone 13 (Picture courtesy: Apple Inc) Photograph:(Twitter)

Story highlights

The iPhone 13 has a smaller display cutout, or “notch,” at the top of the screen, as well as larger batteries that provides devices between 1.5 and 2.5 more hours of battery life than last year’s models, depending on device size, Apple said. 

Apple CEO Tim Cook launched the latest and most awaited new iPhone model, called the iPhone 13, to over 2 million viewers on YouTube on Tuesday.

According to Apple, the iPhone 13 sports a smaller display cutout, or "notch," at the top of the screen, as well as larger batteries that deliver between 1.5 and 2.5 hours of battery life, depending on device size, over last year's models. 

Apple Inc. released the iPhone 13 and 13 Mini with brighter screens, as well as improvements to its iPads and watches, to tempt customers into 5G plans.

The iPhone 13 will be available in five colours and will contain a new chip called the A15 Bionic, which will enable functions such as automatically detecting when the phone's camera is directed at text. 

The new iPhone 13 features new diagonally placed camera modules that are basically the same as last year's model.

According to Apple, one camera is a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens with a large sensor that collects 50% more light.

The ultra-wide lens is the other lens.

A new "cinematic mode" that can retain focus on a moving subject is one of the camera upgrades. 

iPhone 13 camera

iPhone 13 camera specifications (Picture courtesy: Apple Inc.)

"The competition is still playing catchup to our chips - not just from last year, but even from two years ago," said Kaiann Drance, an Apple iPhone marketing executive.

The Series 7 smart watch will feature a larger display and faster charging. It will start at $399 and be available later this autumn.


iPhone 13 mini

The battery life has improved: 

The iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini have a bigger battery. It will last up to an hour and a half longer than the iPhone 12 according to Apple.

This is great news for iPhone 13 mini fans. The iPhone 12 mini's battery was ridiculed last year for not lasting as long as the larger models. 

The iPad Mini has also been updated with 5G connection and a new design that resembles the higher-end iPad Air and Pro versions.

Apple also added a new camera to its base-model iPad, allowing users to work and learn from home.

The iPad starts at $329 for the standard model and $499 for the Mini.

Next week, both will be available for sale.

Apple shares were down 0.5%, in-line with a slight downturn in broader markets.

Apple last year introduced its iPhone 12, which featured a new look and its first devices with 5G connectivity. This year, analyst expect modest hardware upgrades and a deeper focus on 5G.

In particular, carriers such as AT&T Inc, Verizon Communications and T-Mobile that have significantly built out their networks since the start of this year are likely to offer new incentives around the devices that can take advantage of the faster speeds those networks can offer, said Ben Bajarin, head of consumer technologies at Creative Strategies.

"There seems to be way more (5G network capacity) than was in place even six months ago," Bajarin said. "They want people upgrading. They're going to be really aggressive."

Apple's biggest product launch of the year comes as some of the shine has come off its stock as business practices such as charging software developers commissions on in-app payments have come under regulatory scrutiny.

Apple shares were up about 15.6% year to date, trailing the Nasdaq Composite Index, which was up nearly 19% over the same period.

The Apple Watch has become a cornerstone of its $30.6 billion accessories segment, which was up 25% in Apple's most recent fiscal year even as its iPhone revenue declined slightly. Analysts widely believe that Apple users who buy more than one product - such as an Apple Watch and iPhone - are more likely to stick with the brand and spend on the company's apps and services.

Apple focused on fitness features such as improving how the watch tracks bicycling workouts and dust protection for hiking. The watch is paired tightly with Apple Fitness+, a paid service offering guided workouts with Apple instructors. The company added pilates and skiing-oriented workouts, and a group workouts function designed to let users work out together. The company also bundled three months of free service with its watch devices.

Shares of exercise bike and online training company Peloton were down about 1.6%.

"It's the one service they offer where you literally have to have this product or you can't use this service," Bajarin said.

(With inputs from agencies)