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iPhone 13 mini vs. iPhone 13: Size matters!

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iPhone 13 mini vs. iPhone 13: Size matters!
The iPhone 13 series official announcement is already in the annals of history. There is some good news and some bad news, as always. 

The good news is that the iPhone 13 mini lives to see another day. For all the fans of ultra-compact flagship phones, the iPhone 12 mini was а dream incarnate, and now we've got its rightful heir.

Sadly, the mini and the vanilla iPhone 13 don't sport the fast display refresh rates of their bigger siblings. While the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max brought the ProMotion 120Hz panels to the table, the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13 rely on the old school 60Hz refresh rate.

Today we’re gonna compare the iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13 in search of answers. What are the main differences? Are they big enough to sway the scales and justify a buying decision? Read on to find out!

You can pre-order the iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13 here:

Apple iPhone 13

Save up to $720 on iPhone 13

$109
$829
Buy at BestBuy

Apple iPhone 13 Pro

Save up to $1,000 on iPhone 13 Pro

$0
$999
Buy at BestBuy

Apple iPhone 13 mini

With activation on T-Mobile

$599 99
$699 99
Buy at BestBuy

Apple iPhone 13

With activation on T-Mobile

$699 99
$799 99
Buy at BestBuy

Apple iPhone 13 Pro

With activation on T-Mobile

$899 99
$999 99
Buy at BestBuy

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max

With activation on T-Mobile

$999 99
$1099 99
Buy at BestBuy


Also read:

iPhone 13 mini vs iPhone 13 at a glance:

  • 5.4-inch vs 6.1-inch, 60Hz display refresh rate on both
  • 12 MP/F1.6 wide angle + 12MP/F2.4 ultra wide angle on both, 2x optical zoom
  • A15 Bionic chipset on both
  • Bigger battery on the iPhone 13
  • $699 vs $799 for the 128GB version

Display and Design

  • Smaller notch on both (20%)
  • iPhone 13 mini – 5.4-inch display at a resolution of 1080 x 2340 pixels (476 PPI, 60Hz)
  • iPhone 13 – 6.1-inch display at a resolution of 1170 x 2532 pixels (460 PPI, 60Hz)

With the iPhone 13 series, it’s all about refinement. There are no major changes in the design, apart from a smaller notch and the fact that the two cameras on the back will no longer be in a vertical line, but on a diagonal.


The display size difference between the iPhone 13 mini and the regular iPhone 13 remains the same. 5.4 inches for the mini versus 6.1 inches on the regular iPhone 13. The biggest omission here is the ProMotion tech from the bigger siblings. While the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max can do 10Hz to 120Hz display refresh rates, the iPhone 13 mini and the regular iPhone 13 are stuck with the old school 60Hz display refresh rate.

The brightness of both displays has been bumped up from 625 nits (iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12) to 800 nits, while the HDR brightness remains the same - 1200 nits on both the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13. Both phones have the same display tech inside, the only difference being the size. So, if you opt to go for the iPhone 13 mini, you won't sacrifice anything besides screen estate.

Battery and charging

  • Video playback: Up to 17 hours vs Up to 19 hours
  • Video playback (streamed): Up to 13 hours vs Up to 15 hours
  • Audio playback: Up to 55 hours vs Up to 75 hours

The battery life of the iPhone 12 series, and the iPhone 12 mini in particular, was a subject to criticism. Apple has listened and managed to upgrade the battery capacity in both the iPhone 13 mini and its bigger sibling. Granted, this comes at the expense of 0,26mm thicker bodies on both phones.

Apple didn't disclose the exact numbers regarding the battery capacity during the official announcement, but the company did say that the overall battery life has been improved both in the iPhone 13 mini and the regular iPhone 13 compared to the previous generation (1.5 hours and 2.5 hours longer respectively). 

You can see the numbers cited by Apple above - the iPhone 13 may have a bigger battery but it also has a larger screen. All in all, the battery life is similar on both phones with a slight advantage for the iPhone 13 over the mini. Stay tuned for some real-life testing as soon as we lay our hand on a review sample!

On the other hand, fast charging is still not that fast, capping at 20W on both the iPhone 13 mini and the regular 12. The MagSafe technology is present on both phones with stronger magnets and wireless charging, so no big difference on that front.

Cameras

  • 12 MP/F1.6 wide angle + 12MP/F2.4 ultra wide angle on both
  • Sensor-shift optical image stabilization

The camera systems on both the iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13 are identical. We're looking at dual camera systems on both phones with 12MP wide and 12MP ultra-wide snappers. The system has been upgraded with the main camera module practically borrowed from the iPhone 12 Pro Max, featuring sensor-shift optical image stabilization.
The ultra-wide cameras in both phones have been upgraded as well - Apple says that it's a brand new custom-made sensor but in reality the aperture is the same as the one in the previous generation - f/2.4.

All this simplifies the matter when it comes down to choosing which one you want. They are practically identical on the camera front. 

Performance and features

  • Apple A15 bionic chipset on both
  • 128GB base storage

The A15 Bionic is again the fastest CPU in any smartphone, up to 50% faster than the leading competition for graphics intensive tasks. The four core GPU delivers up to 30% faster graphics and there's also a new 16 core neural engine. The chipset is made using а 5 nm manufacturing process and Apple boasts it has nearly 15 billion transistors inside.
It's not a surprise and the performance difference with the A14 is not that big either - the A15 is just about 7% faster than the A14. This is another easy decision right here - both the iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13 feature the same internals - the same record-setting A15 Bionic.

The memory configuration is also the same - the base storage has been upgraded from 64GB to 128GB, and you can now go up to 512GB. There's no official info about the RAM inside but it's safe to assume that we're looking at pretty much the same amount in both phones.

Conclusion


If we want to simplify the matter - there are three main differences between the iPhone 13 mini and the iPhone 13. The first one is obvious - the size. Then there's the battery life that's supposed to be a bit better on the iPhone 13 (more tests needed), and finally - the price.

Which makes it real easy for the customer. If you want a compact phone, go for the iPhone 13 mini, if you prefer a bigger screen then iPhone 13 is the right one for you. As simple as that.

iPhone 13 Mini vs iPhone 13: Specs Comparison


 

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