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New iPhones Amongst Five Apple Products Unveiled at the September 2021 Event

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California-based Apple Inc. held its annual fall Apple event announcement on Tuesday to the joy of technology enthusiasts around the globe. The tech giant is perpetually tight-lipped on what will be featured during its events and iPhones are typically the mainstay of the fall events with other surprises sprinkled in. The 2021 event was no different as it became the typical iPhone launch announcement as well as unveiling a couple other new products. There were a total of five new hardware products introduced: iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13, Apple Watch Series 7, the iPad and the iPad mini.

Apple Fall 2021 Event
Apple Fall 2021 Event. Photo: Apple

For context into the world of Apple Events, this fall Apple event (which we will informally term as the “Fall Apple Event 2021”) loosely forms a staple for the Apple Events calendar. While Apple is known to call special Apple Events whenever it wants, the fall event is usually accompanied by the following two calendar events each year:

  • Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC): This event typically announces the newest Apple Operating Systems (OS) to the developer community. Mainly to give some ‘runway’ to allow applications to be updated/developed before their release on the new products announcements/releases in the fall event. The latest was held in June 2021 which introduced the latest apple operating systems for iPhone (iOS 15), iPad (iPadOS 15), Mac (macOS Monterey) and Apple Watch (watchOS 8).
  • Spring Apple Event 2021: The spring event typically announces another round of follow-up devices after the fall event. The most recent was held in April 2021 introducing the new iMac, iPad Pro, iPhone 12 in Purple, AirTags and Apple TV 4K.

Many Apple enthusiasts set their clocks to the fall, spring and WWDC events. The 2020 event calendar was thrown askew with COVID splitting announcements up, including:

  • September 2020: Apple Watch, the new iPad Air and two new Apple services (Apple Fitness+ and Apple One Bundle) were announced. See our review of Apple Fitness+ from its launch in December 2020.
  • October 2020: iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, HomePod Mini and MagSafe accessories were announced
  • November 2020: MacBook Air, Macbook Pro, Mac mini were announced.

iPhone 13 Pro

"iPhone 13 Pro" and "iPhone 13 Pro Max"
“iPhone 13 Pro” and “iPhone 13 Pro Max”. Photo: Apple.

The feather in Apple’s cap is its iPhone Pro product which the company has released faithfully since iPhone 11 Pro in 2019. The iPhone 13 Pro is offered in two sizes: The “iPhone 13 Pro” and “iPhone 13 Pro Max”. The most visible difference between the two is the screen size (6.1 inch and 6.7 inch, respectively).

Both versions offer the same capacity options (128GB, 256GB, 512GB and 1TB) as well as the same A15 chip, cameras, Face ID, sensors, iOS, etc. but differences in battery performance with the “Max” version’s additional size to have a bigger battery. 

“iPhone 13 Pro” and “iPhone 13 Pro Max” battery spec differences. Photo: Apple.

Differences between iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro

While the price point between the two generations is unchanged, the main differences besides the battery we mentioned above included:

  • Internal Capacity: The largest internal space increased to 1TB with no elimination of the smallest internal space option (128GB) from last year.
  • Camera: Apple continued to emphasize its improvements to the camera functionality in 2021 as it did in 2020. The iPhone Pro series has the same three cameras on the back (Telephoto, Ultra Wide and Wide Cameras) with improvements to low light as well as wider ultrawide apertures and more optical zoom for the telephoto lens. Night Mode stabilizing is now available for both Pro versions, instead of the Max version for the iPhone 12.
  • Screen: The ‘notch’ at the top of the iPhone 13 is smaller. Otherwise, they look the same.
  • Chip (aka, performance): The new A15 chip (versus the 2020 A14 chip) is faster as one would assume. It comes with a 5-core graphics processor (GPU) versus the 4-core from 2020.

Other differences were noted including a 28% brighter display and new colour options (such as Sierra Blue).

For those looking between the iPhone 13 Pro versus the non-Pro lineup, the processors are the same (A15 Bionic chip) with 6-cores for all models; however, the graphics processor (GPU has an extra core in the Pro series).

iPhone 13

"iPhone 13 mini" and "iPhone 13"
“iPhone 13 mini” and “iPhone 13”. Photo: Apple.

Not to be confused with the “Pro” version, the iPhone launch announcement included the non-Pro “iPhone 13” coming in two sizes: The “iPhone 13 mini” and “iPhone 13”. The most visible difference between the two is the screen size (5.4 inch and 6.1 inch, respectively). And yes, the larger “iPhone 13” has the same screen size as the “iPhone 13 Pro”.

While the non-Pro version of the iPhone 13 mini and non-mini do not offer the 1TB internal space offering as the “Pro” version, it has an ample offering of 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB for both non-Pro versions.

Differences between iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 versions

While the price point between the two generations is unchanged, the main differences besides the battery we mentioned above included:

  • Camera: The iPhone series (non-Pro) has the same two cameras on the back (Ultra Wide and Wide Cameras) with improvements to low light in the 12 MP main camera. The most dramatic camera improvements were definitely reserved for the Pro lineup.
  • Screen: The ‘notch’ at the top of the iPhone 13 is smaller. Otherwise, they look the same.
  • Chip (aka, performance): The new A15 chip (versus the 2020 A14 chip) is faster as one would assume. It comes with a 5-core graphics processor (GPU) versus the 4-core from 2020.

Other differences were noted like a 28% brighter display and new color options (like Pink).

iPhone 13 Availability

The iPhone Pro and iPhone 13 are currently available to view pricing on Apple’s website. Pre-orders begin on September 17 and shipping begins September 24, 2021.

iPhone Availability for September 2021
iPhone Availability for September 2021. Photo: Apple

Apple has now retired the iPhone 12 Pro line from its website as well as the iPhone XR; however, it is retaining the iPhone 12 and iPhone SE on its website for customers as well. The iPhone 11 was also spotted on the website for purchase as well.

Apple Watch Series 7

Apple Watch Availability for September 2021. Series 7 is still pending. Photo: Apple

The new Apple Watch Series 7 was announced on Tuesday as well as the iPhone launch announcements. More details will come from Retail Insider and it is said to be ‘available later this fall’ and its key improvements are larger screen size and faster charging ability.

Apple iPad and iPad Mini

iPad Availability for September 2021. Photo: Apple

Apple’s baseline iPad and mini versions also had new versions announced on Tuesday. More details will come from Retail Insider; however, it is said to be available now for ordering being shipped September 24, 2021.

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