iPhone 13: Everything Australians need to know

Apple’s latest smartphone gets a cinematic camera upgrade and a refreshed display on Pro models.

Cheapest iPhone 13 Mini plan
Cheapest iPhone 13 plan
Cheapest iPhone 13 Pro plan
Cheapest iPhone 13 Pro Max plan
Brodie Fogg
Editorial Lead
Read More
Published on September 17, 2021
8 min read

Apple’s iPhone 13 had its red carpet debut this morning when Tim Cook and his coterie of dentally-superior Apple colleagues revealed the 2021 series of smartphones (as well as a new New iPad, new iPad mini and the Apple Watch Series 7). Like the iPhone 12 before it, the iPhone 13 series is made up of the smaller iPhone 13 mini, the standard iPhone 13 and the premium iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max.



iPhone 13 in Pink (Australia)
Everything you need to know before purchasing iPhone 13
Megaphone

Quick look: What’s new in the iPhone 13 series?

Cinematic mode
  • New A15 Bionic chipset
  • Improved camera array with Cinematic video features
  • 1TB option for iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max
  • No more 64GB
  • ProMotion: 120Hz refresh rate on Pro models
  • Better battery life across the board
  • Smaller notch

The upgrades to the iPhone 13 series won’t be enough to tempt iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 users to upgrade but there are still a few notable upgrades to further sway users on older handsets.

Every iPhone 13 model is packing the new A15 chipset which Apple claims offers a CPU that’s “50% faster than the competition” and graphics that are “30% faster than the competition.” But numbers are boring. What that actually means for you is that iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13 users can take advantage of the seriously impressive Cinematic Mode of the new handsets, which allows you to use fancy filmmaking techniques like locking auto-focus tracking and advanced video editing options, such as refocusing after capture. The new chipset also improves battery optimisation yet again, which is always welcome as the demands of 5G continue to create new battery hurdles for manufacturers.

The latest camera developments result in larger photo files so Apple has also gone ahead and kicked the 64GB model to the curb, with iPhone 13 models starting at 128GB. At the other end of the spectrum, Apple has increased the maximum storage of the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max models to a whopping 1TB.

In general, the camera sensors are larger across the entire range too, which allows for more detail in Ultra Wide photos, 47% more light in Wide lens photos and sensor-shift OIS (optical image stabilisation) across the entire range.

Sadly, Apple has once again withheld mmWave 5G from Australian iPhone handsets. We’re still stuck with sub-6 5G in the iPhone 13 series, which stings a little more this year as mmWave technology has finally started rolling out.

What didn’t make the cut?

Early rumours pointed to an Always-On Display for the iPhone 13 series but that never came true. We were also hoping to see mmWave 5G included on the local range of iPhone 13 handsets but it looks like we’ll be waiting another year at least for the superior 5G frequency. As expected, there was also no mention of Apple’s rumoured foldable which nobody was really anticipating but it would have been a killer surprise.

How much does the iPhone 13 cost in Australia?

Refreshingly, those shopping for a Pro model this year won’t pay any more for the iPhone 13 Pro or Pro Max than they would have for the iPhone 12 Pro/Pro Max last year. That also means you can now grab an iPhone 12 at a cheaper price. There’s also a new (and pricey) 1TB storage option at the high-end of the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max range. There’s also no 64GB option but thankfully, the 128GB model has replaced the 64GB’s pricepoint.

In Australia, the iPhone 13 price range starts at $1,199 for the iPhone 13 mini and costs up to $2,719 for the 1TB iPhone 13 Pro Max.

Here’s the full list of iPhone 13 and local pricing.

Complete local pricing for iPhone 13 range in Australia
Model
128GB
256GB
512GB
1TB
iPhone 13 mini$1,199$1,369$1,719N/A
iPhone 13$1,349$1,519$1,869N/A
iPhone 13 Pro$1,699$1,869$2,219$2,569
iPhone 13 Pro Max$1,849$2,019$2,369$2,719

When will the iPhone 13 release in Australia?

Preorders for the iPhone 13 opened on Friday the 17th of September at 10:00pm AEST through Apple, JB HI-FI, Kogan and The Good Guys or on a plan through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone with devices available from Friday, the 24th of September.

iPhone 13 mini

Apple’s compact 5.1-inch gets a second chance.
iPhone Minis
  • Price: From $1,199
  • Colours: (PRODUCT) Red, Starlight, Midnight, Blue, Pink
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB or 512GB
  • Display: 5.4-inch Super Retina XDR
  • Water resistance: IP68 (max depth of 6 metres up to 30 minutes)
  • Chipset: A15 Bionic (6-core CPU, 4-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine)
  • Camera: Dual 12MP (Wide f/1.6 and Ultra Wide f/2.4)
  • Zoom: 2x Optical, 5x digital
  • Video: Up to 4K@60fps w/ Cinematic Mode, Dolby Vision HDR
  • Connectivity: 5G (sub-6)

Despite being a highlight of the show last year, the compact iPhone 12 mini failed to meet sales expectations for Apple in 2020. The success of the ASUS Zenfone 8 proves there’s an appetite for smaller smartphones but the iPhone 12 mini missed the mark by cutting a few corners in order to keep the form factor trim and the price tag low(er).

Many thought the mini iPhone was destined for the Apple graveyard, but it’s getting one more crack this year with the iPhone 13 mini. One of the biggest issues with the iPhone 12 mini was its battery life. Apple claims the new iPhone 13 mini lasts 1.5 hours longer on average thanks to the optimisation offered by the new A15 chipset. It’s an improvement but we’ll find out whether it’s enough of an upgrade when we get our hands on the iPhone 13 mini.

The advanced camera array is still the defining feature of the Pro series so just like last year, it’s the biggest sacrifice you’ll make by opting for the smaller handset. With that said, Apple’s still given the iPhone 13 mini’s camera a little bump in performance. By repositioning the lenses, Apple has managed to increase the sensor size of the standard Wide Angle shooter while cramming in sensor-shift OIS and as faster Ultra Wide lens.

Importantly, even the iPhone 13 mini is capable of using the impressive new Cinematic shooting mode, which can shift focus automatically to target a subject’s gaze and adjust the depth and background blur of a video after shooting.

The other biggest piece of news from the reveal was the removal of the low-end 64GB model. To accommodate for the larger photo and video file sizes created using the advanced camera features, Apple has made 128GB the standard storage size. This year’s 128GB iPhone 13 mini costs the same as last year’s 64GB iPhone 12 mini, which is a nice bonus.

iPhone 13 mini pricing in Australia

Here’s how much the iPhone 13 mini costs outright in Australia:

  • iPhone 13 mini 128GB: $1,199
  • iPhone 13 mini 256GB: $1,369
  • iPhone 13 mini 512GB: $1,719

iPhone 13 mini plans

iPhone 13 mini plans are available through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone. Here’s a selection of iPhone 13 mini plans from each provider.

iPhone 13

The vanilla 6.1-inch iPhone
iPhone 13
  • Price: From $1,349
  • Colours: (PRODUCT) Red, Starlight, Midnight, Blue, Pink
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB or 512GB
  • Display: 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR
  • Water resistance: IP68 (max depth of 6 metres up to 30 minutes)
  • Chipset: A15 Bionic (6-core CPU, 4-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine)
  • Camera: Dual 12MP (Wide f/1.6 and Ultra Wide f/2.4)
  • Zoom: 2x Optical, 5x digital
  • Video: Up to 4K@60fps w/ Cinematic Mode, Dolby Vision HDR
  • Connectivity: 5G (sub-6)

As last year, the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini are birds of a feather. The standard iPhone 13 offers all the same improvements as detailed above with a few changes. It shares the same 6.1-inch screen size as the iPhone 13 Pro and all the advantages of the new A15 chipset, including an extra 2.5 hours of battery life every day (compared to the iPhone 12).

Other than that, you can expect all the same improvements as the iPhone 13 mini, including Cinematic mode for creating and editing video, Sensor-shift OIS in the Wide camera, the bigger sensor (which captures 47% more light) and the improved Ultra Wide lens.

iPhone 13 pricing in Australia

Here’s how much the iPhone 13 costs outright in Australia:

  • iPhone 13 128GB: $1,349
  • iPhone 13 256GB: $1,519
  • iPhone 13 512GB: $1,869

iPhone 13 plans

iPhone 13 plans are available through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone. Here’s a selection of iPhone 13 plans from each provider.

iPhone 13 Pro

The 6.1-inch iPhone with all the Pro trimmings
iphone 13 pros
  • Price: From $1,699
  • Colours: Graphite, Gold, Silver, Sierra Blue
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB or 1TB
  • Display: 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR with 120Hz ProMotion
  • Water resistance: IP68 (max depth of 6 metres up to 30 minutes)
  • Chipset: A15 Bionic (6-core CPU, 5-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine)
  • Camera: Triple 12MP (Wide f/1.6, Ultra Wide f/2.4 and Telephoto f/2.8 w/PDAF OIS) and Macro photography
    features
  • Zoom: 3x Optical, 5x digital
  • Video: Up to 4K@60fps w/ Cinematic Mode, Dolby Vision HDR and ProRes
  • Connectivity: 5G (sub-6)

Once again, the iPhone 13 Pro packs in all the premium trimmings of Apple’s Pro range behind a more modest 6.1-inch display. This year, Apple has continued to improve on the Pro’s camera array, including Night Mode on every camera, a wider aperture and larger sensor on the standard Wide Angle shooter with a wider aperture and faster sensor on the Ultra Wide lens. This amounts to a 92% improvement on the Ultra Wide camera and a Wide camera that’s capable of capturing 2.2x more light in photos and videos (giving low-light photos a lot more detail).

There are a few new features in the Camera app for Pro users too, like Photographic Styles, presets for Tone and Warmth that you can set as default and ProRes, a Pro-exclusive video shooting mode that gives you higher colour fidelity and lower compression (though that feature will arrive in a later update). The iPhone 13 Pro will, of course, have access to the Cinematic mode for shooting video too.

As we wave goodbye to the 64GB iPhone storage option, we welcome a new unit to the ranks, the huge (and expensive) 1TB model. It’s a lot of storage but the new camera features will produce some hefty photo and video file sizes so you might end up needing it.

Finally, as all the rumours suggested, Apple has finally introduced a 120Hz refresh rate to the iPhone 13 Pro series and has given it a decidedly Apple name, ProMotion. It’s essentially an adaptive refresh option that allows the iPhone 13 Pro to hit 120 frames-per-second when required. This will be most noticeable if you’re playing fast-paced mobile games but even everyday use, like swiping through messages and navigating menus, should be noticeably smoother.

iPhone 13 Pro pricing in Australia

Here’s how much the iPhone 13 Pro costs outright in Australia:

  • iPhone 13 Pro 128GB: $1,699
  • iPhone 13 Pro 256GB: $1,869
  • iPhone 13 Pro 512GB: $2,219
  • iPhone 13 Pro 1TB: $2,569

iPhone 13 Pro plans

iPhone 13 Pro plans are available through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone. Here are the most popular iPhone 13 Pro plans available.

iPhone 13 Pro Max

This year’s 6.7-inch goliath is Apple’s longest-lasting iPhone yet.
iPhone 13 Pro Maxes
  • Price: From $1,849
  • Colours: Graphite, Gold, Silver, Sierra Blue
  • Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB or 1TB
  • Display: 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR with 120Hz ProMotion
  • Water resistance: IP68 (max depth of 6 metres up to 30 minutes)
  • Chipset: A15 Bionic (6-core CPU, 5-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine)
  • Camera: Triple 12MP (Wide f/1.6, Ultra Wide f/2.4 and Telephoto f/2.8 w/PDAF OIS) and Macro photography
    features
  • Zoom: 3x Optical, 5x digital
  • Video: Up to 4K@60fps w/ Cinematic Mode, Dolby Vision HDR and ProRes
  • Connectivity: 5G (sub-6)

Just like the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini, the differences between the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max are negligible. The most obvious differences are the larger 6.7-inch display with 120Hz ProMotion and the larger price tag. The iPhone 13 Pro Max starts at $1,849 for the 128GB model (same price that the iPhone 12 Pro Max launched at) but thanks to the new 1TB option, can cost up to an eye-watering $2,719. A bigger display always requires a bigger battery but Apple claims the iPhone 12 Pro Max is the longest-lasting iPhone ever created with roughly 2.5 more hours daily than the iPhone 12 Pro Max. We’ll definitely be putting that claim to the test when we get a chance to review the huge unit.

Other than those small changes, the iPhone 13 Pro Max’s display, camera tech, processing power and build is a near one-to-one match of the iPhone 13 Pro, which we detailed above.

iPhone 13 Pro Max pricing in Australia

Here’s how much the iPhone 13 Pro Max costs outright in Australia:

  • iPhone 13 Pro Max 128GB: $1,849
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max 256GB: $2,019
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max 512GB: $2,369
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max 1TB: $2,719

iPhone 13 Pro Max plans

iPhone 13 Pro Max plans are available through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone. Here are the most popular iPhone 13 Pro Max plans available.

Brodie Fogg
Written by
Brodie Fogg
Brodie Fogg is the Australian editorial lead at Reviews.org. He has covered consumer tech, telecommunications, video games, streaming and entertainment for over five years at websites like WhistleOut and Finder and can be found sharing streaming recommendations at 7NEWS every month.

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