Apple unveils iPhone 13: Improved cameras, more performance, better battery life and 120 Hz

Apple unveils iPhone 13: Improved cameras, more performance, better battery life and 120 Hz

As expected, the American giant officially lifted the veil on the new iPhone 13 smartphone series, but not only that, as it also presented the new iPad and iPad Mini as well as the new connected Apple Watch. Here is a small review of the announcements.

The presentation began with the announcement of the new iPad and iPad mini, Apple’s tablets, and then came the time to unveil the new design of the Apple Watch, which now benefits from a screen that is intended to be unbreakable and which is a little more on the edges than the previous generation. But what interests us more here is the new series of smartphones, the iPhone 13. It is well named iPhone 13 and not iPhone 12s as some people thought, given the small improvements made. There is an iPhone 13 mini, an iPhone 13, an iPhone 13 Pro and an iPhone 13 Pro Max.

All the iPhone 13 benefit from the new Apple A15 Bionic chip that replaces the A14 Bionic processor found on the iPhone 12. This chipset promises more power to the device and in particular the possibility to go further in the field of photo and video. But before seeing the components, note that the iPhone 13 are all thicker offering a thinness of 7.65 mm against 7.4 mm for the previous generation. This is mainly due to a larger battery, but Apple has not yet communicated on their respective capacity according to models. The manufacturer was content to indicate a better autonomy for all its smartphones without more details either on the possibility of a fast charge or not. All are capable of being recharged wirelessly and for the Pro versions to offer reverse charging. If the iPads are now moving to USB-C connectivity, this is not the case for the iPhone 13 which remain with Lightning connectors.

Same design and same connectivity

The design is identical to the iPhone 12 series with the only difference being the rear photo sensors which are now installed diagonally and the front notch which is slightly smaller. The iPhone 13s offer exactly the same connectivity as the iPhone 12s with Wi-Fi 6, 5G, NFC and an mmWave module to pick up nearby connected objects. The screen is also the same as the previous generation’s at the pixel level. The only difference is that the Pro and Pro Max models benefit from a 120 Hz refresh rate thanks to the Pro Motion technology inherited from the iPad Pro. This allows them to offer an adaptive frequency that adjusts automatically depending on the application in use. The iPhone 13 are always waterproof, certified IP68.

Reorganization of the photo modules and new video functions

The iPhone 13 series offers a different organization of the photo sensors at the back with, for the mini and standard versions, a diagonal positioning because of the main sensor now equipped with an optical image stabilizer requiring a little more space to fit. This allows the mobile to offer longer exposure times and more limited movement. It is still a 12-megapixel sensor that is also used for wide-angle photos. The Pro and Pro Max versions also have a third 12-megapixel sensor, also stabilized, which allows for a 3x optical zoom. There is always the Lidar sensor. A macro mode is also provided with the ability to shoot at 2 cm from the subject. The front photo lenses are the same as on the iPhone 12. Note that Apple offers a new mode for filming: the Cinematic Mode. This is to offer directors and content creators the ability to make a “double focus” to focus on a subject and, in the same shot sequence, to produce it also on another subject, more in the background, for example. This function will be manual or automatic.

The other big news in terms of video is the possibility for the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max to film with a Pro Res quality, which could be compared to RAW in the field of photography. This format is mainly dedicated to post-production, which will be able to extract a maximum of metadata in order to make the most of the sequences thus produced. Note that this feature will arrive later this year, with an update. For the photo, a new option called Photographic Style allows you to keep the settings of a shot in memory to reuse them in another context. The iPhone 13 offers at least 128 GB of storage space (the Pro versions will not be able to support the Pro Res video format in this version), but also 256 GB, 512 GB and, only for the Pro and Pro Max, up to 1 TB of internal memory without the possibility of additional expansion.

It remains for Apple to specify the amount of RAM embedded in each model as well as the capacity of the batteries, because during its presentation, the manufacturer remained evasive on these two points as well as on the possibility of a fast charge.

Prices and availability dates

The new iPhone 13 will be available for pre-order from September 17 at 2pm from the manufacturer’s website for availability in stores from September 24.

Count on prices of $699 for the iPhone 13 mini of 128 GB, $799 to have 256 GB and $999 for the 512 GB version.

For the iPhone 13, it will be offered at $799 for 128 GB, $999 for 256 GB and $999 for 512 GB.

The iPhone 13 Pro will be available at $999 for 128 GB, $1,099 for 256 GB, $1,299 for 512 GB and $1,499 for 1 TB.

Finally, for the iPhone 13 Pro Max count on respective prices of $1,099, $1,199, $1,399 and $1,599 for the versions of 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB and 1 TB.

The iPhone 13 would support LEO communication, but what is it?

The iPhone 13 would support LEO communication, but what is it?

Apple would secretly work on the integration of a new technology: satellite telecommunication. Instead of using terrestrial antennas, the new iPhone could communicate directly with the sky via a constellation of satellites in low earth orbit.

The iPhone 13 should be announced in September and marketed in the wake, the information and indiscretions about it do not stop to break for a few weeks. It’s hard to see more clearly, but we should know soon enough. In the meantime, a new information has just arrived. According to Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst specialized in Apple issues, the iPhone 13 would offer a LEO satellite connection.

What is a Leo Connection ?

LEO stands for low earth orbit, which is translated into French as l’orbite terrestre basse or OTB. This is an area of the Earth’s orbit that extends up to 2,000 kilometers above the Earth’s atmosphere.

It is in this zone that the vast majority of artificial satellites are located, for telecommunications and imaging (weather, surveillance, intelligence, etc.). One can theoretically connect to a satellite anywhere on the surface of the Earth, this is what Elon Musk is setting up with Starlink.

The advantage of this low orbit is that it does not require the power that is used by geostationary satellite systems (35,000 kilometers above the Earth’s surface). Lightweight communication systems have been available since the late 1980s, but they require adapted and compatible equipment. According to Ming-Chi Kuo, the iPhone 13 would be compatible with these systems. The proposed speeds are low, equivalent to 3G, they allow mainly to make calls and send messages, but also to browse the web.

More concretely, the iPhone could support the frequency bands emitted by these satellites to exchange data. The new iPhone range would have a Qualcomm X60 chip customized to support communication via LEO satellites.

Today, the speculations around the new means of communication on the iPhone are not clear. Apple could offer this service for free but limit it to its services (FaceTime and iMessage). We also do not know if this service will be available in all countries, it is necessary that the territory is covered and it depends on operators (Iridium, Inmarsat, etc.)

Samsung would bring a high-end feature to all its Galaxy A in 2022

Samsung would bring a high-end feature to all its Galaxy A in 2022

According to information from The Elec, Samsung plans to offer optical stabilization for all its mid-range smartphones next year.

When we look at the photo features of a smartphone, several criteria are to be taken into account. This is the case for the size of the photo sensor, the definition, the focal length of the lens or its focal aperture. However, one feature is often overlooked and yet can significantly improve the shooting: the optical stabilization.

For photos or videos captured at wide angle or with the telephoto lens, optical stabilization can greatly improve the shot. It must be said that the optical stabilization allows to reduce considerably the shakes and thus to avoid the problems in video, but also the problems of blur in photo. Often offered on the most high-end smartphones, optical stabilization of cameras is however generally forgotten on mid-range models. These are often satisfied with a simple electronic stabilization that will cut into the image and create a “jello” effect.

Nevertheless, it seems that Samsung is well aware of the limitations of simple electronic stabilization and is looking to significantly improve the photo quality of its mid-range smartphones for next year. According to the Korean website The Elec, which is generally well informed about the manufacturer’s plans, Samsung is planning to integrate optical image stabilization (OIS) on its entire Galaxy A range in 2022:

According to industry sources this Friday, Samsung Electronics is reportedly planning to expand optical stabilization integration to its entire Galaxy A mid-range next year.

This generalization of optical stabilization on Samsung’s mid-range would in fact be the logical continuation after the integration of OIS on some models this year. The manufacturer has already integrated optical stabilization on some of its smartphones: the Galaxy A72, the Galaxy A52 4G, the Galaxy A52 5G and the Galaxy A22 4G. Nevertheless, several models were content with a simple electronic stabilization, such as the Galaxy A22 5G, the Galaxy A42, the Galaxy A32 4G and the Galaxy A32 5G.

Optical stabilization as an answer to chinese manufacturers

However, we don’t know which cameras will benefit from this optical stabilization. We imagine that it will be mainly the main sensors, that is to say the wide-angle modules, or even, in some cases, the cameras with telephoto lens. Nevertheless, The Elec does not give more information on this subject.

The integration of such a mechanism on Samsung’s mid-range smartphones is mainly aimed at responding to a fiercer competition on the mid-range. If the Korean manufacturer has long been able to rely on its interface or the quality of its screens on this price segment, Chinese manufacturers are beginning to catch up, sometimes with other assets. On the Vivo side, optical stabilization is one of the main arguments for premium smartphones, especially with the Vivo X60 Pro, which is equipped with a gimbal to stabilize its main camera.

Android 12: Google will remove Android Auto, here's what will change

Android 12: Google will remove Android Auto, here’s what will change

If you have a car and use an Android smartphone, then you probably know about Google’s Android Auto app.  With the release of Android 12, however, Google has decided to ditch the Android Auto app in favor of Google Assistant Car Mode.

  • Starting with Android 12, the Android Auto app will be replaced by Google Assistant Car Mode;
  • Android Auto for compatible vehicles will not be affected.

With Android Auto, it’s possible to access smartphone apps from the car’s infotainment system, or even create a navigation environment directly on the device itself, to use apps like Google Maps, Waze, Spotify and receive calls without taking your eyes off the road. However, Google also offers a similar experience with Google Assistant Car Mode.

Now, to avoid this overlap of features and focus on developing a single comprehensive Android experience for cars, Google has confirmed to 9to5Google that Android Auto will be dropped on smartphones running Android 12 in favor of Google Assistant Car Mode:

For those using Android Auto on compatible vehicles, this experience will not end there. For those using the mobile experience (Android Auto mobile app), they will be redirected to Google Assistant Car Mode. Starting with Android 12, Google Assistant Car Mode will be the integrated mobile driving experience. We have no further details to share at this time.

Personally, I think this decision by Google is pretty consistent, given that Google Assistant’s Car Mode is easier to use and is present on a much larger number of smartphones, since it is a native app, even having a dedicated button on some devices.

However, it’s a little worrying that Google Assistant is getting more and more attention from the company and will force even more people to use it for important daily actions, like driving from home to work every day.

Samsung will finally remove ads in its applications

Samsung will finally remove ads in its applications

If you use a Samsung smartphone, then you may be familiar with the ads in some system applications. After spending more than 1,000 euros for a Galaxy S21+ or a Samsung foldable smartphone, it is of course very annoying. However, this annoying practice will come to an end as the manufacturer announced today that it will remove advertising in the affected apps. NextPit shows you which Samsung apps are affected.

  • Samsung to remove ads from its system apps
  • Ads were only introduced last year in apps like Samsung Music, Samsung Pay, etc.
  • This move is aimed at improving the user experience in the Galaxy ecosystem in the long run.

Last year, Samsung introduced ads in its applications. For example, even with a Galaxy S21 Ultra bought for more than 1000 euros, you had to deal with ads in apps like Samsung Pay, Samsung Music or Samsung’s weather app. Of course, this was not only a thorn in the side of many users, but it certainly drove people away from using Samsung’s apps.

Samsung understood this, as the manufacturer announced that it would remove the ads from its overlay, OneUI. According to Sammobile, Samsung’s “president and head of the mobile communications business” announced this information during an online conference. This decision is, among other things, a reaction to internal criticism.

The Galaxy ecosystem must be strengthened

Sammobile also told us that Samsung is looking to strengthen its Galaxy ecosystem. And since the ads in the applications have attracted a lot of criticism, the manufacturer is now looking for “new growth opportunities in the area of content services and advertising.” So it remains to be seen whether Samsung will integrate ads elsewhere in the interface to draw attention to its own services.

It is also quite possible that Samsung’s decision is a reaction to the decline in sales of Galaxy devices. Personally, however, I wonder if this is the right approach. Maybe it’s not the ads that are driving Samsung customers away, but the flagships without micro SD card support or other points of criticism we made in our tests of Samsung’s new flagships.