Ming-Chi Kuo, a credible Apple analyst, has told investors that the iPhone 13 lineup that is slated for release in the second half of 2021 will feature the same wide-angle lens as the current iPhone 12, but the ultra-wide will likely see an upgrade.
Kuo, who has been cited numerous times in the past and was responsible for the report that Apple won’t be implementing periscope technology into its camera array for at least a few years, recently provided a note to investors that discusses Apple’s plan for the 2021 iPhone release.
In the note, which was obtained by MacRumors, Kuo says that the iPhone 13 mini, iPhone 13, and iPhone 13 Pro will feature the same wide-angle lens with the f/1.6 aperture as the current iPhone 12 series does. The iPhone 13 Pro Max, the largest of Apple’s smartphones, will have a marginally improved f/1.5 aperture wide-angle lens, which is only slightly better than the f/1.6 lens on the current Pro Max.
Curiously, Kuo seems to indicate that the iPhone mini will still be a product launched this year despite tepid consumer response. The poor sales are a shame, as the iPhone mini actually has a lot of desirable features that make it unique in the current landscape of large phones, and seeing that Apple may still produce it is a good sign for those who enjoy the smaller form factor.
While that is a disappointment, MacRumors cites a different source — Barclays analysts — says that the ultra-wide-angle lens is seeing a notable improvement over the current generation devices to an f/1.8 aperture over the f/2.4 aperture found on the iPhone 12 devices.
Additionally, the size of the camera sensors in the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max is expected to increase according to Ross Young, a well-respected display analyst according to MacRumors. It’s not clear which of the cameras would be targetted for the upgrade, but any camera equipped with a larger sensor is sure to improve the image quality.
While the latest rumors don’t offer a lot to get excited about, Apple has been able to do quite a bit with its computational photography to squeeze the most out of the same small sensors it has been using for several phone generations. Any physical improvements are bound to make noticeable changes to image quality, even if on paper they don’t seem particularly exciting.