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Apple iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Is the upgrade worth it?

iPhone 14 vs 13
© Apple, Collage: NextPit

What advantages does the iPhone 14 have over its predecessor? If you are faced with the decision on whether you should rather buy the latest iPhone or the iPhone 13, you have arrived at the right page! In our comparison, we pit the two iPhone generations from 2021 and 2022.

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Apple introduced the iPhone 14 series in September 2022 during its annual product launch for new smartphones. If you didn't spend September detoxing digitally, you would surely know that Apple integrated quite a few innovations like Dynamic Island into the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max models. The compact mini models were also replaced by the larger iPhone 14 Plus this year.

However, it is particularly difficult to choose between the latest iPhone generation and its predecessor this year. Whether the $799 asking price for the new model is worth it depends on you, where we will look in greater detail below.

  2022 model 2021 model
Product
Image
Apple iPhone 14
Apple iPhone 13
Display 6.1-inch OLED display with 1,170 x 2,532 pixels (460 ppi) at 60 hertz 6.1-inch OLED display with 1,170 x 2,532 pixels (460 ppi) at 60 hertz
SoC Apple A15 Bionic (5nm) | Apple GPU with 5 cores Apple A15 Bionic (5nm) | Apple GPU with 4 cores
Memory 6 GB RAM | 128 GB, 256 GB or 512 GB internal 4 GB RAM | 128 GB, 256 GB or 512 GB internal
Micro SD No No
Main camera 12 MP | f/1.5 | 26 mm | 1.9 µm | dual pixel autofocus, sensor shift OIS 12 MP | f/1.6 | 26 mm | 1.7 µm | dual-pixel autofocus, sensor-shift OIS
Ultra wide-angle 12 MP | f/2.4 | 120° | 13 millimeter focal length 12 MP | f/2.4 | 120° | 13 millimeter focal length
Telephoto - -
3D - -
Video Max: 4K at 60 fps | HDR | Dolby Vision HDR | Cinematic Mode Max: 4K at 60 fps | HDR | Dolby Vision HDR | Cinematic Mode
Selfies 12 MP at 23 mm 12 MP at 23 mm
Audio Stereo speakers Stereo speaker
UWB Yes Yes
Battery 3,279 mAh 3,227 mAh
Quick-charging Max. 20 watts Max. 20 watts
Wireless charging Max. 15 watts Max. 15 watts
Colors Midnight, Polaris, Purple, Blue, (PRODUCT)RED Polaris, Midnight, Blue, Rose,
Green, (PRODUCT)RED
Dimensions and weight 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.80 mm | 172 g 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.65 mm | 173 g
Price (MSRP) From $799 From $699
Good
  • Top performance level despite last year's chip
  • Very high quality workmanship
  • Improved image and video quality
  • Excellent battery life
  • OLED display with deep black tones
  • Good battery life
  • Good camera quality
  • IP68 certification
  • iOS 15
Bad
  • Hardly any innovations
  • Charging takes too long for 2022
  • Screen refresh rate of only 60 Hz
  • Face ID remains cumbersome when using masks
  • Quick charging with only 20 watts
Rating
Read the iPhone 14 review
Read the iPhone 13 review
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If you look at the table thoroughly, you might suspect that the iPhone 14 is not a really fat update. But let's not speculate, but take a look in turn at whether the iPhone 14 is better, and if so: what it does better than last year's vanilla iPhone.

Jump to:

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Models and prices

Like last year, there are again four models: two base models and two Pro models. What's new is that Apple is dropping the Mini and giving the iPhone 14 an iPhone 14 Plus instead. If you want a mini model, you have to buy last year's iPhone 13 Mini on the Apple website from $599.

The iPhone 14 Plus is delayed and will not be available until October, just like the Pro models. Therefore, we do not include both the Mini and Plus models in our comparison of the base models.

Apple has increased the price by a $100 bucks per device, depending on the storage size. Here is an overview of the prices for the iPhone 14 and the iPhone 13:

Prices at a glance

Model iPhone 14 iPhone 13 Difference
128 GB $799 $699 + $100
256 GB $899 $799 + $100
512 GB $1,099 $999 + $100

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Design and display

If you take an iPhone 13 in one hand and an iPhone 14 in the other, you won't be able to tell the difference right away. Both iterations could be twins, so identical are the dimensions and the general design. Height times width remains absolutely identical, but the new iPhone is an incredible 0.25 mm thicker and with 172 grams also one gram lighter than the predecessor.

iPhone 14 colors
The Apple iPhone 14 is available in five colors. / © Apple, Screenshot: NextPit

There are slight changes in terms of color: Midnight and Aurora Borealis remain, as do (PRODUCT)RED and Blue. Okay, the blue looks different than last year's, though. In addition, violet replaces rosé this year.

The display is even less different than the design. Again, 6.1 inches, again AMOLED with identical resolution and again only 60 hertz. The "Dynamic Island" of the Pro models is also missing, so you will find the identical notch of the iPhone 13 in the iPhone 14 as well. If Apple should have included innovation in the iPhone 14, the company from Cupertino was able to hide it perfectly, at least for design, material choice, and display.

Apple changed the inner workings of the iPhone 14 to facilitate easier repairs, which hopefully will also be cheaper. At $169 a pop to repair the glass on the back, for example, the iPhone is much more repairable. If you are rather clumsy with your smartphone, the iPhone 14 might be the better choice for you.

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Performance

A15 Bionic? We know that too, don't we? Okay, it's actually not a new SoC, but still a change compared to last year's base iPhone. The variant from the iPhone 13 Pro is now used—an identical chipset, but with five instead of four graphics cores.

Das iPhone 14 von vorne
Apple's iPhone 14 offers the same processor as the Pro variants of the previous models. / © NextPit

It has not yet been officially confirmed that the iPhone now has 6 GB of RAM instead of last year's 4 GB. These were only available for the Pro models last year, but are now said to have arrived in the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus as well. This means that you should not expect a performance explosion with the combination of more RAM and more graphics cores, but the iPhone 14 still leaves the iPhone 13 behind in terms of performance. In our benchmark test, the iPhone 14 performed as follows:

  Apple iPhone 14 Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max Asus Zenfone 9 Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3
3D Mark Wild Life Too powerful Too powerful Too powerful 8611 5683
3D Mark Wild Life Extreme 2431 3362 - - -
3D Mark Wild Life Stress Test Best Loop: 9,761
Worst Loop: 8,321
Best Loop: 9,599
Worst Loop: 8,121
Best Loop: 10,524
Worst Loop: 5,617
Best Loop: 10,332
Worst Loop: 5,606
Best loop: 5,579
Worst Loop: 3,435
Geekbench 5 Single: 1699
Multiple: 4817
Simple: 1885
Multiple: 5406
Single: 1263
Several: 3899
Single: 1332
Several: 3947
Single: 1095
Multiple: 3239

And otherwise? Everything as usual: No microSD slot, still 128 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB as available storage variants. The iPhone 14 should be a bit faster and offer a bit more graphics performance - at least a bit. Apple has also improved the sensor technology so that the drop detection now also detects car accidents. Furthermore, you can call for help via satellite thanks to "Emergency SOS" when Wi-Fi and mobile Internet fail you.

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Camera

But now: If not much else has changed, then Apple has certainly made a decent leap forward in its special discipline, photos, hasn't it? At least Apple itself writes on the product page that the iPhone 14 makes a "huge leap for low-light photos". How does Apple explain this leap?

The specs tell us that the main camera is equipped with a ƒ/1.5 aperture instead of the ƒ/1.6 aperture. This should allow the iPhone to capture up to 49 percent more light. At the same time, Apple rearranged its image processing process, where the new Photonic Engine works in such a way that the ISP, the Image Signaling Processor, has more raw data available for processing. The advantage should be more noticeable in your photos, especially at night.

Nahaufnahme von der Hauptkamera des iPhone 14
The new flash is supposed to be more consistent depending on which lens you use. / © NextPit

Last but not least, there is an improved front camera which continues to remain at 12 megapixels, but Apple has installed an autofocus for the very first time. In reality, as we found out in our review of the iPhone 14, this did not make a really big difference. The reason? The sharp area in photos is very large with such small sensors, even without autofocus. The advantages are more pronounced in the close-up range.

Two exciting benefits for fans of video: There is a new Action mode that Apple offers powerful digital stabilization of video content. There's also an upgrade for Apple's cinema mode. It now works with either 24 or 30 frames per second with 4K resolution. In the video above you can see both upgrades in action!

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Battery capacity and charging

The battery lasts longer, Apple promises: 20 instead of 19 hours of video playback are possible, Cupertino reports. Apple is regularly reluctant to give precise values for the battery capacity, but it has been leaked that the battery in the iPhone 14 has increased slightly with 3,279 mAh compared to 3,227 mAh.

iPhone 14 wird per MagSafe geladen
Wireless charging has a power of 15 W with MagSafe products and 7.5 W with other products. / © NextPit

Oh, you also want to know something about Fast Charging? Sorry, it's not worth mentioning. Fast charging will remain at a maximum of 20 Watts, and wireless charging will continue to be possible with a maximum of 15 watts. Of course, wireless charging via MagSafe or any Qi-compatible charger is still there so you do not have to throw out your older accessories

iPhone 14 vs. iPhone 13: Which phone should you choose in 2022?

In summary, there are few convincing arguments for dropping $799 on the new iPhone 14 if you already own the predecessor. And even if you don't own the iPhone 13, picking one up is advisable since the prices have dropped since the iPhone 14 was released. The iPhone 14 feels the same as the iPhone 13 in everyday use and offers a very similar performance in everyday use.

The iPhone 14 will only offer noticeable advantages to those of you who love to record videos with the smartphone. Although the hardware is very similar, the video mode and the 4K Cinematic Mode will probably remain exclusive to the iPhone 14 models. However, you should also think twice before paying the extra price for one of the new Pro models. For a detailed description of practical use, read our iPhone 14 Pro review and iPhone 14 Pro Max review.

Before we leave you to make the final decision: You can already find all relevant information about the iPhone models available in stores in our major iPhone overview. That way, you can best assess which particular iPhone suits your needs.

Which model are you most likely to choose? Let us know in the comments!

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