All iPhone 13 models to feature LiDAR scanner, Pro models getting 1TB storage option
All four new iPhone 13 models will have a LiDAR scanner, a feature previously only available on the Pro models and a key piece of a high-quality augmented reality experience. The news comes from Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives in a note to investors seen by MacRumors, and it only affirms Apple's serious intentions in AR.
***Update: New details from the same report have emerged and they are very interesting. Wedbush not only mentions LiDAR, but further expects that the “iPhone supercycle party continues” with the iPhone 13 family, according to 9to5Mac. Based on supply chain information, the analysts estimate the iPhone 13 will launch in the third week of September with Apple’s orders for the new series nearly 20% higher compared to last year's orders for the iPhone 12. This definitely shows that Apple is confident the new iPhone 13 family will be an absolute hit performer and gives us reasons to believe there are impressive new features that we may not have heard of just yet.***
Analysts predict “iPhone supercycle party continues” with the iPhone 13
LiDAR which stands for "light detection and ranging" made its debut on the iPad Pro in April 2020 and Apple then emphasized that the new sensor will be used mostly for AR, even though it also helps the camera focus faster in low light.
LiDAR technology is best explained as essentially a 3D Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensor. It emits light beams and as they bounce off of your surroundings, sensors inside are able to measure the time it took for the light to bounce back from surfaces and uses that information to estimate a distance with a pretty good accuracy. Unlike Face ID which is optimized to scan your face, the LiDAR scanner shoots more dispersed light beams better optimized for scanning a whole room.
Despite all of this, Apple hasn't really advertized the LiDAR sensor much and except for the AR Measure app, the company is not using it to its full potential just yet. This new leak about all four new iPhones having it, however, definitely shows that Apple has serious intentions for AR.
The white dots are beams of light emitted by the LiDAR sensor, seen on an infrared camera. Image courtesy of Halide
Back in March, Ives was also among the first to predict that the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max will be available in a new, 1TB storage option, double the current 512GB maxed out storage version. In this latest report, Ives once again confirms this is indeed still on track to happen.
Earlier leak also revealed that the iPhone 13 series will all get a nifty battery upgrade with larger capacities for each model. The iPhone 13 Pro Max is the one that will get the biggest battery boost with an up to 20% larger battery.
We have also earlier heard that the iPhone 13 series could get an in-screen fingerprint scanner, much like what most Android phones use. We also expect to see two new color options for the Pro series: matte black and bronze.
Last but not least, Ives says that Apple is planning to unveil new 14" and 16" Macbook Pros at WWDC next week. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has previously also said that Apple plans to unveil new Macbook Pros this summer, and another leaker, Jon Prosser, also expects the pair to arrive soon and possibly at WWDC.
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