iPhone 13: All the features we expected, but didn’t get

Apple announcements September 14 2021: iPhone 13, new iPads, Apple Watch Series 7, and more

The iPhone 13 brings new options like higher cameras and longer battery life, however it’s nonetheless lacking some helpful capabilties. 

This story is part of Apple Event, our full coverage of the latest news from Apple.

Apple’s iPhone 13 and 13 Pro definitely have loads to supply over their predecessors: longer battery life, higher cameras and extra cupboard space on the base stage. However there are nonetheless loads of options we would hoped to see on the iPhone 13 lineup
which can be lacking from Apple’s newest iteration of smartphones. Many of those capabilities can be found on Android rivals, whereas some may even be discovered on different Apple merchandise. 

The iPhone 13, which became available for preorder Friday morning, begins at $829 for the usual mannequin with out a service low cost. The Mini begins at $729, whereas the iPhone 13 Professional begins at $999 and the iPhone 13 Professional Max has an entry worth of $1,099.

From an in-screen fingerprint reader to a very borderless display screen, listed below are the options which can be nonetheless lacking from the iPhone 13. 

USB-C help

Would not it’s nice in case you may use the identical charger in your iPhone and the opposite devices in your house? Sadly, Apple’s newest iPhone is once again missing USB-C connectivity. As has been the case since 2012, the newest iPhones require Apple’s proprietary Lightning cable for wired charging.

Not solely does that imply you possibly can’t use chargers from different devices to energy up your iPhone, however it additionally means chargers from different Apple cellular gadgets may not be suitable along with your iPhone. Apple’s iPad Air, iPad Professional and newly introduced iPad Mini, for instance, all cost through USB-C. Which means even in case you’re an Apple loyalist, you will have to maintain observe of a number of charging cables.

An in-screen fingerprint reader

Face ID works nice more often than not, however it will be good to have the choice of utilizing your fingerprint to unlock your system as nicely. That is very true during the last year-and-a-half since Face ID cannot precisely determine you whereas sporting a face masks. If you do not have an Apple Watch, you have most likely been typing in your passcode rather more than standard over the previous yr.

Many Android telephones, similar to these from Samsung, Motorola and OnePlus, have fingerprint readers constructed into their screens. A 2019 report from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is thought for his typically correct Apple predictions, stated Apple would launch an iPhone with Face ID and an in-display fingerprint sensor in 2021. That did not turn into true, however maybe we’ll see it within the iPhone 14. 

Satellite tv for pc connectivity

Probably the most distinguished rumors in regards to the iPhone 13 within the weeks earlier than its launch was that it will come with satellite connectivity for sending texts in emergency situations. That did not turn into true, no less than not but. 

Kuo and Bloomberg each reported that the iPhone 13 would be capable of use satellite tv for pc connectivity in areas with out mobile protection. However Bloomberg’s report offered a bit extra element, saying that this function would primarily function an SOS for contacting emergency providers. Messages would have a size restriction, and also you may need to stroll to a sure location to attach. 

Nonetheless, the Bloomberg report did say that the function might be scrapped, and it additionally warned that the iPhone 13 might not have the function at launch even when it does have the {hardware} to help it.

Wi-Fi 6e help

Wi-Fi 6e remains to be new and is not essential simply but. However since many individuals purchase an iPhone with the intention of retaining it for a number of years, it will have been useful to see Wi-Fi 6e help in no less than the Professional and Professional Max fashions.

Wi-Fi 6e is a particular designation for Wi-Fi 6 gadgets that enables them to entry the brand new 6GHz band of spectrum. As my colleague Ry Crist puts it, consider the 6GHz band as a “shiny, new seven-lane superhighway” that is solely accessible for supported gadgets. The two.4GHz and 5GHz bands we’re used to connecting on right now’s routers are like a “one-lane nation freeway” and a “three-lane interstate” respectively compared. 

There aren’t many smartphones on the market that help Wi-Fi 6e but. However Samsung’s Galaxy S21 Extremely is one among them, and we’re already seeing routers from Asus and Netgear that help this Wi-Fi designation. Should you’re paying for the top-of-the-line iPhone, it will be helpful to no less than have Wi-Fi 6e connectivity as an possibility.

An always-on show

My Apple Watch has an always-in show, and I solely want my iPhone may, too. For years, smartphones from Samsung, OnePlus and different Android system makers have had screens which can be able to exhibiting info on-screen even when the show is asleep. 

That may not sound like a giant deal, however I’ve discovered it to be surprisingly helpful. Most telephones with an always-on show will present info just like the time and your subsequent calendar occasion when the show is turned off. 

Having this info accessible at a look has made it simpler to see when my subsequent assembly is with out having to really decide up my telephone, which is useful for avoiding distractions. Should you do not personal a smartwatch, an always-on show makes it simpler to shortly see small bits of knowledge whereas sustaining a long way out of your telephone. 

A telephoto lens with a 10x optical zoom

The iPhone 13 lineup is getting some main enhancements when it comes to camera quality. There is a new Cinematic mode on all 4 fashions that robotically switches the main target between topics as wanted, and the iPhone 13 Professional is getting the power to take macro photographs.

However the iPhone 13’s telephoto digital camera nonetheless does not have as shut a zoom as Samsung’s Galaxy S21 Ultra. The iPhone 13 Professional and iPhone 13 Professional Max have 6x optical zoom vary, whereas the Galaxy S21 Extremely has two telephoto lenses that help a 3x and 10x optical zoom. 

Samsung’s smartphones are recognized for his or her zooming capabilities, which is why the Galaxy Word 20 Extremely was named our favorite phone for camera zoom in 2020. However we’ll have to attend till we have examined the iPhone 13 Professional to see the way it actually stacks up in opposition to Samsung’s newest flagships. 

A notch-free display screen

Sure, Apple followers are most likely used to the “notch” by now since it has been current on iPhones since 2017. Nevertheless it’s onerous to miss it when you think about the progress Android device-makers have made on this regard.

Most Android smartphones include notch-free screens that embody only a delicate hole-shaped cutout for the digital camera. Samsung was among the many earliest to embrace this design again in 2019 with the Galaxy S10 household. However now, this design is frequent throughout the Android panorama, whether or not you are taking a look at telephones from Samsung, Google, OnePlus or Motorola.

Nonetheless, it is value stating that a part of the rationale why the iPhone’s notch is so giant is as a result of that is the place all of its Face ID sensors are situated. Apple’s facial recognition system has typically been thought of to be ahead of the competition, particularly across the time it launched. 

The pliability to regulate the display screen’s refresh fee 

The iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max are the primary iPhones to get Apple’s ProMotion function, which boosts the show’s refresh fee to as much as 120Hz for smoother scrolling and elevated responsiveness. To preserve battery life, it throttles the display screen to a decrease refresh fee to take care of battery life.

Different telephones just like the Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S20 offer you extra management and suppleness by permitting you to decide on while you wish to crank the refresh rate up to 120Hz moderately than having the telephone resolve for you. It is potential to decide on between a smoother scrolling possibility and a battery life possibility in Samsung’s settings menu. You will must be prepared to sacrifice some picture high quality and battery life, nevertheless.

Sooner wi-fi charging

Wi-fi charging has been normal on the iPhone since 2017, however we nonetheless have but to see significant enhancements on the subject of charging speeds. Should you’re not utilizing a MagSafe wireless charger, which may ship 15W wi-fi charging speeds, you will solely be capable of cost your iPhone at 7.5W. 

That is loads slower than most Android telephones. Samsung’s Galaxy S21, for instance, supports 10W wireless charging, whereas the Galaxy S20 FE helps quicker 15W wireless charging. The OnePlus 9 Professional, in the meantime, helps 50W wi-fi charging.

Now that wi-fi charging is a given and is now not thought of a rarity on smartphones, it will be good to see Apple enhance the iPhone’s wi-fi charging speeds the best way it has achieved for the Apple Watch.

Reverse wi-fi charging

We have all been there. Possibly you are on the bus or practice, and also you pull out your AirPods solely to see that dreaded crimson gentle signaling that your battery is about to expire. If solely you possibly can relaxation your AirPods case on the again of your iPhone to provide it just a little energy enhance.

This function, broadly referred to as reverse wi-fi charging, is offered on Android telephones like Samsung’s Galaxy S21 line and the Google Pixel 5, however not on the iPhone 13. It basically permits the again of your telephone to behave as a wi-fi charging pad for equipment like smartphones, wi-fi earbuds and even different telephones.

Though this function is not accessible now, there are clues that Apple could also be desirous about it. Filings with the Federal Communications Fee from October 2020 suggests Apple may have built the required expertise into the iPhone even when it isn’t enabled. 

Apple Pencil help

Apple has introduced Apple Pencil help to each iPad in its lineup, however there’s nonetheless no compatibility with the iPhone. I may significantly see the Apple Pencil being helpful on the iPhone 13 Professional Max and the iPhone 12 Pro Max, each of which have practically tablet-size 6.7-inch screens that are perfect for sketching and notice taking. Plus, including Apple Pencil help to the super-size Professional Max telephones would give Apple yet one more technique to differentiate it from the 6.1-inch Professional and make extra use of its bigger display screen.

Lossless audio over Bluetooth

With chipmaker Qualcomm debuting its new proprietary audio format for delivering lossless audio over Bluetooth, it will have been good to listen to comparable ambitions from Apple. 

Lossless audio makes use of a unique compression technique that preserves extra element than the method that is used to make Bluetooth audio recordsdata sufficiently small to retailer in your telephone. Qualcomm expects gadgets that help its lossless audio format ought to be launching in early 2022, so there’s an opportunity we’ll hear extra about it round CES in January.

Within the meantime, you will have to make use of wired headphones or your iPhone’s built-in audio system to hearken to lossless music out of your cellular system. 

Middle Stage for video calls

The entry-level iPad and iPad Mini now have Center Stage, the function that robotically retains your face in body when video chatting over FaceTime, Zoom and different apps. It really works robotically and has been super-convenient now that many people are speaking with buddies, coworkers and members of the family over video calls. 

It will be extra helpful, nevertheless, if Middle Stage was accessible throughout all of Apple’s merchandise, together with iPhones and Macs. In actual fact, I do most of my video chatting on an iPhone or a Mac moderately than an iPad, particularly since telephones are smaller and often simpler to carry at eye stage in portrait orientation. 


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