iPhone 13 vs. iPhone 13 Pro Buyer’s Guide 

 December 19, 2021

In 2021, Apple revealed the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro as the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro beneficiaries, featuring a slimmer notch, the A15 Bionic chip, longer battery life, significantly improved cameras, and new color options across the lineup. In addition, the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro share most features, such as display size, processor, and 5G connectivity.

The iPhone 13 commences at $799, while the iPhone 13 Pro begins at $999. As Apple’s latest iPhones share many features, should you think of buying the lower-cost model to save money or opt for the high-end “Pro” model? Our guide helps to answer how to determine which of these two iPhones is best for you.

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Read on for a tighter look at each aspect to see what precisely both iPhones have to offer.

Design and Colors

The iPhone 13 & iPhone 13 Pro keep the same squared-off industrial structure with a flat band around the flanks first introduced with the iPhone 12 lineup. However, the most noticeable visual difference between the two devices is their different materials and finishes.

Colors

The iPhone 13 employs aerospace-grade anodized aluminum on the fringes and a single piece of polished glass on the rear. In contrast, the iPhone 13 Pro operates surgical-grade polished stainless steel on the edges and a single bit of matte, frosted glass on the back. The iPhone 13 is available in Red, Blue, Starlight, Midnight, and Pink. The iPhone 13 Pro is available in Silver, Graphite, Gold, and Sierra Blue. The iPhone 13 Pro offers a more elegant appearance and a heavier, tactile feel in hand. However, the iPhone 13 is still considered a premium device with a more diverse range of color options. As the designs are similar and vary in materials, color options, and rear camera configurations, appreciation for the iPhone 13 or the iPhone 13 Pro will come down to individual taste.

iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro
iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro

ProMotion Display

The iPhone 13 Pro characterizes the ProMotion technology that Apple initially introduced with the iPad Pro in 2017, showing an adaptive refresh rate ranging from 10Hz to 120Hz. The display of the iPhone 13 Pro is also able to reach 200 nits brighter than the iPhone 13 in typical, non-HDR use. The iPhone 13 does not contain ProMotion, but it is unnecessary for most users. The iPhone 13 Pro is the first iPhone to feature the technology, with all other iPhones to date, including a display with a non-variable and lower maximum refresh pace.

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Cameras and LiDAR

The significant difference between the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro is their rear camera setups. The iPhone 13 Pro has a triple camera setup that adds a Telephoto lens. The iPhone 13 has a dual 12MP camera system with Ultra Wide and Wide lenses. The iPhone 13 Pro can also optically zoom three times in due to its Telephoto lens, which the iPhone 13 lacks entirely. It can also digitally zoom in ten times further than the iPhone 13.

Every lens of the iPhone 13 Pro characterized a larger aperture than on the iPhone 13 to allow more light in, with an ƒ/1.8 Ultra Wide and ƒ/1.5 Wide compared to the ƒ/2.4 Ultra Wide and ƒ/1.6 Wide cameras of the iPhone 13, which should make for better image quality. The iPhone 13 Pro can also bring photos in Apple ProRaw and document video in 4K ProRes at 30 fps, file formats that take maximum advantage of the device’s rear cameras. In addition, the iPhone 13 Pro has a LiDAR Scanner in the rear camera array to accurately map the background and depth. It allows the iPhone 13 Pro to bring Night mode portrait photos and delivers enhanced AR experiences

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A15 Bionic Chip

The iPhone 13 and the iPhone 13 Pro incorporate Apple’s latest A15 Bionic chip, which offers moderate performance gains over last year’s A14 chip. While the chips in both iPhones are the same, the GPU in the iPhone 13 Pro holds one additional core.

Battery Life

The iPhone 13 Pro delivers three extra hours of battery life than the iPhone 13 while playing back video. It can provide five extra hours while streaming video. The iPhone 13 Pro includes an obvious advantage over the iPhone 13 battery life.

Storage Options

Both iPhone 13 & iPhone 13 Pro are obtainable with 512GB, 256GB, and 128GB of storage, but the iPhone 13 Pro is also available with a 1TB storage choice for $1,499. Users who fast fill up smaller storage capacities with apps, music, and movies, may choose to get the iPhone 13 Pro since it suggests a much more extensive maximum storage possibility.

iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro
iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro

Other iPhone Options

It is worth mentioning that the iPhone 13 mini provides the identical feature set as the iPhone 13 for $699, simply with a more compact configuration, a 5.4-inch display, and a negligibly shorter 17 hours of battery life (during video playback). On the other hand, iPhone 13 Pro Max mirrors the quality set of the iPhone 13 Pro, but with a larger design, a 6.7-inch display, and a longer 28 hours of battery life (during video playback), starting at $1,099.

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Difference: iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro

iPhone 13iPhone 13 Pro
Aerospace-grade aluminum design Weighs 174 grams
6.1-inch Super Retina XDR display with 800 nits max brightness (typical)
A15 Bionic chip with four-core GPU
4GB of memory
Up to 19 hours of battery life (during video playback).
12MP ƒ/2.4 Ultra Wide and ƒ/1.6 Wide cameras
2x optical zoom out and digital zoom up to 5x
Available in Starlight, Midnight, Blue, Pink, and PRODUCT(RED)
Available in 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB storage options
Surgical-grade stainless steel design
Weighs 204 grams, 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR display with 1,000 nits max brightness (typical) and ProMotion with adaptive refresh rate up to 120Hz, A15 Bionic chip with five-core GPU
6GB of memory, Up to 22 hours of battery life (during video playback).
12MP ƒ/1.8 Ultra Wide, ƒ/1.5 Wide, and ƒ/2.8 Telephoto cameras
3x optical zoom in, 2x optical zoom out, 6x optical zoom range and digital zoom up to 15x
Apple ProRAW and Night mode portraits
ProRes video recording up to 4K at 30fps, LiDAR Scanner for Night mode portraits, faster autofocus in low light, and next-level AR experiences
Available in Sierra Blue, Gold, Graphite, and Silver
Available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB storage options

Final Thoughts

Overall, the iPhone 13 Pro delivers clear advancements over the iPhone 13, specifically its materials, display, and rear cameras. However, the iPhone 13 Pro is $200 more than the iPhone 13, and many people will find it challenging to justify the additional cost simply for display, camera, battery, and design improvements that do not significantly modify the day-to-day benefit of the device. Those opting for the iPhone 13 Pro will be pursuing the most premium and full-featured iPhone that delivers the best possible experience and capabilities in all areas, or be interested in specific elements like ProMotion, the Telephoto lens, or shooting video in ProRes. Since the two phones share many components, including design, 5G connectivity, an OLED Super Retina XDR display, the A15 Bionic chip, and MagSafe, it is difficult to recommend the more expensive model actively. As the iPhone 13 Pro improvements are specific and do not hugely alter daily interaction, most people should obtain the iPhone 13.

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