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iPhone 13 vs iPhone 12: Is It Worth The Upgrade?

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iPhone 13 and iPhone 12 come with almost similar design and features but there are some improvements that do make the iPhone 13 stand out. Read the full comparison to find out which features are they.

- Updated: 17th Dec 2021, 22:13 IST

The new iPhone 13 is the best selling smartphone in Apple’s product lineup featuring a new camera system, slightly tweaked design, better battery and smaller notch. While the iPhone 13 is a generation upgrade to the iPhone 12 but there are quite a few upgrades that might not be exciting for anyone looking to upgrade. But an improved battery, processor and cameras can be something to look forward to.

You might be a little confused whether to buy the latest iPhone 13 or stick with the year-old iPhone 12 so here’s a comparison between both the phones showcasing their similarities and also some key differences.

Design: iPhone 13 vs iPhone 12

iPhone 13 design

Apple’s iPhones have looked something similar for quite some time now. But this all changed with the launch of the iPhone 12 series as Apple decided to ditch the curved design and came up with sharp industrial edges for the first time since they launched the original iPhone SE in 2016.

Also, Apple upgraded the design for the iPhone last year and no one expected a major design overhaul in this year’s iPhone 13 series. Also going from Apple’s track record we can rest assured that there won’t be any major design change in the iPhones for a couple of years. 

Also Read: iPhone 13 is Here: Which is the Right Variant for You?

Both iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 are somewhat similar in proportions but not totally identical. The iPhone 13 comes in at 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.65mm while the iPhone 12 comes in at 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.4mm. The new iPhone 13 is also 10 grams heavier than the iPhone 12.

Both iPhones have aluminium edges and glass service in front and back but the colours are a bit different. iPhone 13 comes in Blue, Midnight, Pink, Starlight, and Product Red while you can get the iPhone 12 in Red, White, Black, Green, Blue, and Purple colors. 

iPhone 12 design

The most noticeable change through which you can differentiate in the iPhone 12 in the iPhone 13 is the switch to a diagonally oriented dual-camera module from the vertical one in the iPhone 12. The camera lenses are also a bit bigger with the newer camera module.

For screen protection, both the phones have Apple’s new nano-crystalline Ceramic shield technology which as per the company makes the screens four times stronger than the previous iPhones. There’s also the IP68 water and dust resistance which means that the iPhones can survive in water of upto 6 meters for 30 minutes.

Another noticeable difference is the new iPhone 13 has a smaller notch compared to the previous generation iPhones, approximately 20% smaller. So now there’s more screen to play around with.

Hardware: iPhone 13 vs iPhone 12

iPhone 12 hardware

Both phones contain the same display which is a 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR OLED screen with the same 1170 x 2532 resolution. 

The main difference in both the phones is about peak brightness. The iPhone 13 has a peak brightness of 800 nits while the previous year iPhone is 28% less bright with a peak brightness at 600 nits. But under HDR conditions both phones are able to hit 1200 nits.

Also Read: Everything We Know About the iPhone 14

Unlike last year, this year you have a very good reason to switch to the Pro models. It’s because both the iPhone 13 and iPhone 12 have the same 60Hz display unlike the 13 Pro Max and 13 Pro which come with 120Hz displays. 

A new year means a new processor from Apple and A15 Bionic is just as impressive as you’d expect. Both A15 and A14 bionic chips are 5nm processors but the A15 has received a healthy boost of performance. The A15 has a new 6-core CPU that Apple claims to be 50% faster than the competition. There’s also a 4-core GPU that is 30% faster than what competition has to offer. 

Though it is a day-to-day activity the iPhone 13 doesn’t seem massively faster than the iPhone 12. But the iPhone 13 will certainly make your high-end gaming experience more pleasant thanks to its upgraded GPU. Apple also claims that the iPhone 13 now has more bands compared to the iPhone 12, but unless you work for a network operator you don’t have to bother about this change.

Also, there is a new update to the storage variants that Apple introduces for the iPhones. The company has finally said goodbye to the 64GB variants as base storage which seems a wise option as today it seems pretty much outdated. You now have the choice to pick a variant from 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB in the case of iPhone 13, while the iPhone 12 starts at 64GB and goes up to 256GB storage. 

Apple generally doesn’t showcase how big the batteries are in the iPhones

In terms of battery, the iPhone 13 packs a bigger 3240mAh battery while the iPhone 12 comes with a smaller 2815mAH battery. This big increase in the battery capacity is the reason why Apple claims that the iPhone 13 will last 2.5 hours longer than the iPhone 12. 

While the iPhone 12 left you dry in the middle of the day with a dead battery, the iPhone 13 will certainly last a full day if you are a bit heavy user and more than a day if you are a light user. The iPhone 12 was majorly criticized for having a smaller battery, it provided a battery life that was even shorter than the previous-generation iPhone 11. 

Also this year MagSafe made a return without any significant improvements or increase in charging speeds. Its charging rate still remains at 15W. You’ll have to also keep in mind that there’s no charging adapter provided in either of the iPhones so you’ll have to find a supported charger with 20W capacity to charge your new iPhone. The 20W charging will take you from 0 to 51% in about 30 minutes. This is pretty insignificant seeing as how competitors like OnePlus can fully charge a battery in just under an hour. 

Camera: iPhone 13 vs iPhone 12

iPhone 12 camera

Cameras always are a point of difference in every year’s flagship from Apple. The case is the same between the iPhone 13 and the iPhone 12 even with the same number of lenses. Both the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini comes with a 12-megapixel main camera that is the biggest sensor ever used in a dual-camera iPhone. The new sensor lets in 47% more light compared to the iPhone 12 camera that resulting in sharper images. Both the new iPhone 13 variants sport the censor shift optical image stabilization feature that Apple added to the iPhone 12 Pro Max last year. 

The combination of both large sensors and superior stabilization means that low-light images are a lot better on the iPhone 13 compared to the iPhone 12. Ultrawide sensor in iPhone 13 also has seen improvement with a wider f 1.8 aperture compared to the smaller f 2.4 aperture in iPhone 12. Again this improvement in aperture provides a step up in low light conditions. 

Also Read: 7 Things You Still Don’t Know Your iPhone Can Do

As always iPhones camera software has also seen improvement. You get new “Photographic styles” feature added which enables you to apply custom looks to all your captured images. This goes beyond just filters and fundamentally is shifting the emphasis in iPhone 13 images without making things seem artificial. 

On the video front, the iPhone 13 gains a new feature which is the “Cinematic mode” that can intelligently pick and shift focal points for results. It also automatically changes focus when subjects do and anticipate the time when the subject is going to enter the frame.

Conclusion: iPhone 13 vs iPhone 12

iPhone 13 contains a lot of features that are somewhat of an upgrade from the iPhone 12 and are certainly not worth the upgrade provided both the phones have similar designs and roughly similar feature sets. But the people who are using an older iPhone like the iPhone 8, 10, 11 then you certainly need to make this upgrade. 

The area that you will see significant improvement is in battery life is iPhone 13 can get you through a day of intensive usage where the previous iPhone 12 certainly struggled. Camera performance has taken a large step forward and you will certainly notice superior shots especially in low light conditions. So iPhone 12 users do not have any reason to upgrade to the iPhone 13. You might just want to wait another year.

Also read: iPhone 13 Vs iPhone 13 Pro – A Detailed Comparison

How to sell your old iPhone 11 and upgrade to iPhone 13?

There are a lot of online and offline options to sell your old phone. But if you want to get the best value for your phone we at Cashify can help you out to get the best value for your old device.

Cashify offers a very simple door-step pickup procedure. You just have to schedule a pickup and once it is picked up you’ll receive your money in your bank account. Of course, you can choose from any of the other offline or online options to sell your phone but none of them will provide a value better than Cashify. Here’s how the procedure to sell your phone on Cashify goes.

  1. The process to sell your phone begins with creating an account on Cashify if you already don’t have one. 
  2. Then visit the Sell old phone page and choose the brand of your smartphone. 
  3. Now choose the model of your phone and you will then be redirected to the ‘sell’ page.
  4. You just have to fill in a few details of your device as asked and you’ll have an estimated buyback value for your phone.
  5. Now a Cashify executive will come to your dooorstep, perform a quick quality check and transfer the amount to your bank account. It’s that simple.


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Highlights of the Story

  • iPhone 12 was launched with a new flat edge design and quickly became a hit.
  • The iPhone 13 is the newest and the most popular iPhone right now. The device has an all-improved camera system that is powered by long-lasting battery life.
  • Here’s a comparison between the two devices.

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