Saturday, Dec 3, 2022

iPhone 13 Pro review - "Enhancements galore"

Mobile phone landscape has changed significantly over the past few years. While the top names have remained the same, there has been significant..

iPhone 13 Pro review - "Enhancements galore"

Mobile phone landscape has changed significantly over the past few years. While the top names have remained the same, there has been significant movement beyond the top two or three names. Big names such as Samsung and Apple can't afford being complacent. It's easy to get overconfident when you're at the top. People love to hear about the underdogs who are able to push up the sales charts.

Table of Contents

iPhone 13 Pro designGaming performance and hardwareiPhone13 Pro cameraiPhone13 Pro videoBattery life, charging speed

A major step forward The iPhone 13 Pro proves that the giants can still punch as hard as ever, if perhaps harder, as it turns out. This is a huge leap forward from previous generations and a remarkable improvement on the 11th. It shouldn't have been too difficult to move from the 11 Pro Max to the 13 Pro, especially since most people have multi-year contracts and will usually get a new phone as their old one ages. It would be amazing to see someone go from a 9th to 10th-generation phone to this.

iPhone 13 Pro unboxing

iPhone 13 Pro design The screen quality and speed are two of the most obvious differences in how smartphones work. It may be because these improvements are so obvious that they are so remarkable. While most people don't realize the difference that a 120Hz OLED screen will make to their phone, or the meaning of a phone with an A15 Bionic processor, the results are clear: every screen transition is smoother and images are sharper.

These two areas are actually the three main areas for improvement in this generation's phones, with the camera being the third. The screen resolution and processing power were clearly the main focus of this generation's attention. I don't think I would be willing to change my 120HZ OLED phone as my primary phone after this experience.

There's always the question of FPS (high refresh rate), or HZ being ineffective because the human eye is limited to taking in as much information as it can. These can still be increased to make the experience smoother, as we receive more information at those moments when we have it.

iPhone 13 Pro back view

iPhone 13 Pro Gaming Performances and Hardware The iPhone 13 Pro has the same OLED components that it predecessor. However, the screen size changes (the nub at its top is shrinkaged) and the new framerate has a lot more collateral effects. It seems brighter and the colours and contrast stand out much better than previous iterations. This chipset is much more powerful. It boasts a 6-core CPU and 5-core GPU. The A15 Bionic also has 6GB of RAM. This makes it one of the most powerful phones available.

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It's difficult to measure how much it's better than its competition. Apple doesn't allow us to sample frame rates. However, running COD Mobile, Alien Isolation, and Genshin Impact provides a smooth, seamless experience. As it stands, not many games can challenge the top-end devices. We won't see much of a gap in the next few years, since nobody wants to lock out most of the players.

There aren't many gulfs in the world of things. The iPhone 13 Pro doesn't make a significant design change from the 12 Pro. The most noticeable design change is the fact that the camera nest at the back of the iPhone 13 Pro seems to protrude more. Also, the screen dead-zone surrounding the front-facing cameras seems to have a smaller width but extends a bit further down the screen. This is a sign that long-overdue improvements have been made. However, many apps and games still use shallow notifications at the top of their screens, which can cause them to get lost in the darkness.

Cat photo taken with iPhone 13 Pro

Camera Let's now move on to the final segue. The iPhone 13 Pro's night mode is a must-see when we talk about darkness. This produces a clear image that is easily the best I have seen from any phone I have tried in the past year. The 13 Pro actually handles different levels of lighting very well. This is likely due to the larger aperture lens on its main camera. Perhaps most remarkable is the fact that night mode now works with ultrawide and long-telephoto lenses, an Apple much-needed improvement.

The camera array now includes three 12MP rear cameras and one telephoto lens (77mm x 3x zoom). The night mode upgrade was not the only thing that the ultrawide camera received. It also got a new sensor and an autofocus feature. This helps to get more detail in low light conditions.

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The main camera and ultrawide sensor improvements are outstanding. The macro camera automatically switches on and off, confusingly. This caused some confusion and eventually caused some frustration. Although it's a fantastic little Macro camera, I found it difficult to control the position of my phone to prevent it from shifting. Although there is a solution, it is unclear how it was available at the time of its release.

Flowers photo taken with iPhone 13 Pro

But, shifting-Macro aside. The iPhone 13 Pro is probably the most impressive set of cameras I have ever used on a phone. Night-mode across all lenses is a huge improvement. Both the portrait lens as well as the telephoto have greatly improved colour recognition. I am also impressed by the bokeh effect from the former. To make sure they looked good on my 120hz screen, I saved photos to my computer. iPhone 13 Pro video quality It makes sense to briefly touch on video while we are talking about photography. I don't spend much time making or taking videos on my phone, so I'm perhaps not the most technically-appropriate person to talk about it, however, I do think that the Cinematic Mode that has been added is worth celebrating. This basically adds the portrait mode effect to video. It simulates the pulled-focus effect we see in movies. It can track as well so that it can be used with any subject or camera, while still maintaining the effect.

There's also clever AI at work. The focus shifts when the subject turns their head and looks behind them. This also happens when they look at or gesture at objects. It's uncanny but it enhances the effect. When it works, which it almost always does, it impresses.

The 512GB version is what I am reviewing. It can record at 4K and 30FPS, unlike the 128GB version. At that FPS, the 128GB can only manage 1080p. ProRes is a great option for editing. The phone has more than enough power to do this. All ranges have Dolby Vision HDR, up to 4K and 60FPS. iPhone 13 Pro battery life and charging speed It makes sense to discuss a topic that Apple occupies a little bit in the background: Battery life and charging speed. Although the battery life has improved and I no longer need to charge it every day, assuming that it is only used occasionally, the charging speed of this phone still remains slow. The charge rate for Xiaomi's range was 120W, which is a significant difference from the iPhone 13 Pro, which charges at only a sixth of that. While it is fine to charge your phone at work or overnight, it is definitely an area that Xiaomi needs to improve upon. Maybe the next generation will switch from Lightning cable to USB C.

The iPhone 13 Pro is undoubtedly one of the most powerful phones on the market. It also ranks high in many areas. Pricing is a big issue. But, as anyone reading this will know, iPhones have top-shelf prices in large part because of the ecosystem they are part of. However, this review also highlights the fact that iPhones can be very competitive in every field they compete in.

iPhone 13 Pro review - "Enhancements galore"

The iPhone 13 Pro is a large fish in a small sea, pushing the brand forward in terms of photo quality, processing speed, and more. Although charging speed could be faster, it is one of the few minor flaws in this flagship, generation-leading product.