HomeBlogREVIEWiPhone 13 mini after 90 days: Lengthy-term evaluation of the smallest iPhone

iPhone 13 mini after 90 days: Lengthy-term evaluation of the smallest iPhone

After a number of months of utilizing the iPhone 13 mini as a each day driver, it went by way of quite a bit in my pocket. After snapping 668 photographs, taking pictures 366 movies, going by way of two flights and numerous hours of use, I’ll now summarize how this 5.4-inch cellphone performs in on a regular basis life. The compact measurement of the handset has extra constructive than unfavourable features.

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Good

  • Improbable measurement for on a regular basis use
  • Good picture high quality
  • Superb video high quality
  • Excessive-performance stage

Dangerous

  • Battery life might be higher
  • Show caught at 60 Hertz
  • No reminiscence enlargement choices
  • Lightning connector is annoying (to me)

iPhone 13 mini in a nutshell

After years of utilizing a phablet, the compact iPhone 13 mini has me wrapped round its little finger! Because of the 5.4-inch show, this one finger can also be sufficient to function the system with only one hand, and comfortably at that. It’s actually nice that Apple packed a lot efficiency into the small chassis. The standard of the digicam, the stereo audio system, and in addition the interior microphones are all first-class.

Nonetheless, the compact measurement comes on the expense of battery life. Intensive use of the system typically sees it falter earlier than the day is over. The truth that Apple nonetheless depends on the Lightning port for charging functions makes this difficulty much more problematic for me. Multimedia followers will even not just like the tiny 60 Hertz show regardless of having True Tone and Retina decision. The shortage of reminiscence enlargement is typical for Apple however continues to be annoying for individuals who dabble closely in each video and picture media.

General, the iPhone 13 mini managed to attain 4.5 stars regardless of its drawbacks. If you’re on the lookout for a compact smartphone, you need to check out the iPhone 13 mini.

Design: Sensible and compact

Because of its 5.4-inch show, the iPhone 13 mini measures simply 131.5 x 64.2 x 7.65 millimeters and ideas the scales at a mere 140 grams. The smartphone can also be waterproof based on its IP68 certification, that includes the standard iPhone mute button, and comes with a glass again.

What I preferred:

  • Useful and space-saving due to the mini type issue.
  • Snug to make use of with only one hand.
  • The mute swap is good to “fidget” with.

What I did not like:

  • Very slippery with out a cowl.
  • Microphones are simply coated throughout hands-free calls.
  • Numerous unintentional screenshots because of the buttons’ positions.

A while in the past, I already penned a relatively controversial remark about small smartphones. I nonetheless assume that small handsets are much less prevalent in on a regular basis life. The iPhone is hardly noticeable within the trouser and jacket pockets, all the time remaining firmly in my grip and will be operated comfortably with just one hand. As well as, the handset is ultra-light at 140 grams.

NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Display Test
Honey, I shrunk the iPhone / © NextPit

Apple seals its cellphone in opposition to water and mud based on the IP68 certification. In different phrases, the smartphone can survive for as much as half-hour in water as much as 6 meters deep. This implies I can take pleasure in my habit of shifting the mute button forwards and backwards in my (swimming) pants pocket once I really feel bored whereas swimming. An ideal fidget spinner substitute due to the exact vibration motor!

Nonetheless, the place of the microphones was all the time annoying throughout my long-term evaluation. That is particularly so once you use the cellphone in Apple’s silicone case, you’ll fully mute the opposite celebration once you relaxation the cellphone in your pinky finger throughout hands-free calls because it rests on the recesses within the case. I might not advocate utilizing it with out a case due to the slippery again both, which leaves us in fairly a pickle, would not it?

NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Apple
The again may be very slippery / © NextPit

Final however not least, Apple’s positioning of the buttons is annoying. The massive “on” button is the precise reverse of the “quantity up” button, and that’s Apple’s gesture relating to capturing screenshots. The consequence? Nearly 50 contentless screenshots of my lock display screen, and it retains on piling up.

Show: Excessive-end with a low refresh charge

As within the fundamental iPhone 13, Apple put in a Tremendous Retina XDR show that measures precisely 5.4 inches as an all-screen OLED show. The 476ppi decision is increased than in all different iPhones courtesy of its 2,340 x 1,080 pixels. Nonetheless, the refresh charge is proscribed to 60 hertz.

What I preferred:

  • Good one-handed operation.
  • Sharpest iPhone show.
  • Nice shade constancy due to TrueTone.

What I did not like:

  • Body charge at solely 60 Hertz.
  • Notch design is not updated…
  • …and continues to be not software-optimized.
NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Front Camera
The show may be very good, however solely gives 60 Hertz / © NextPit

The show of the iPhone 13 mini is an actual high-end mini TV. Because of HDR assist, it achieves a most brightness of 1,200 nits, gives an nearly infinite distinction stage due to OLED, and is the sharpest iPhone show available on the market at 476 PPI. The show is what I might additionally wish to see within the iPhone SE sooner or later, which nonetheless appeared with an historical LCD show in 2022.

For picture and video work, the TrueTone assist is useful which mechanically adjusts colours based mostly on the atmosphere. With my relatively giant fingers, one-handed operation is flawless. On the identical time, it’s arduous to hit sure content material exactly, reminiscent of once I’m copying textual content. In any case, you mechanically cowl extra content material along with your fingers on small shows.

Technically, I’ve to criticize the refresh charge of 60 Hertz in comparison with Android alternate options on the identical value. After discovering the show a bit sluggish at first, I shortly obtained used to it in on a regular basis use, although. On this iPhone, I desire Apple’s power-saving refresh charge. I believe 120 Hertz would have made for a fair poorer battery life right here.

NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Case
The matching silicone case moreover protects the show / © NextPit

Apple can also be technically behind within the placement of its front-facing digicam, which takes up a very great amount of area due to Face ID. The enduring notch has shrunk by a number of millimeters, however it’s nonetheless clearly seen when viewing movies.

Instantly after the discharge of the smaller notch, there was ridicule about inappropriate apps like YouTube, the place the notch protrudes a number of millimeters into the image when movies should not stretched to full display screen. It’s annoying that Apple can not clear up this drawback even after a number of iOS updates.

Software program: Future-proof & well-integrated

A detailed overview of iOS 15 is on the market on NextPit if you’re to dive deeper. The working system performs very effectively in on a regular basis use on the iPhone 13 mini. I didn’t discover any show or scaling errors regardless of the smaller show. The software program assist will most likely run from six to seven years, and this makes the cellphone extra sustainable with the relatively costly buy value being thought of as a long-term funding.

Those that additionally use different Apple gadgets will take pleasure in the very best integration between diversified gadgets on the expertise market. It’s also possible to seamlessly open browser tabs in Google Chrome in your MacBook when they’re open on the smartphone, conveniently scan paperwork by way of the iPhone digicam with a easy right-click on the desktop, and can even reply calls on macOS.

An built-in ecosystem is Apple’s greatest power
and on the identical time, a serious drawback. It is because the so-called “walled backyard” makes it tough for third-party suppliers to penetrate the closed system. The chance of selecting extra Apple gadgets for that reason is kind of excessive – and it might probably get relatively costly.

Energy: A tiny powerhouse

The iPhone 13 mini makes use of the A15 Bionic SoC, which is among the strongest smartphone processors available on the market at present. Because of improved NPU efficiency, Apple processes AI features like “Dwell Textual content” or Cinematic Mode straight on the system. Whereas the RAM all the time stays the identical at 4 GB, you possibly can select from 128 GB to 512 GB of inner storage.

What I preferred:

  • Very high-performance stage.
  • By no means skilled issues with overheating up or thermal throttling.
  • 128 GB of storage within the base mannequin.

What I did not like:

  • Reminiscence shouldn’t be expandable.

In our evaluations of the iPhones from 2021 and 2022, we proceed to repeat the next like a parrot: The A15 Bionic is among the strongest smartphone chips available on the market. Nonetheless, that does not solely make for blissful emotions in benchmark checks, but additionally for the mandatory efficiency enhance required in on a regular basis life and at work.

Apple iPhone 13 mini efficiency benchmarks

BenchmarkApple iPhone 13 miniApple iPhone SE 2022Samsung Galaxy S22Oppo Discover X5Oppo Discover X5 ProfessionalAsus Zenfone 8OnePlus 9Xiaomi Mi 11
3D Mark Wildlife9292 at 55,6 fps9214 at 55,2 fps735 at 42,10 fps5830 at 34,9 fps9300 at 55,7 fps575356835702
3D Mark Wildlife stress take a look at (finest / worst)8968 / 71688173 / 67625581 / 35374723 / 32179192 / 6069582557165697
Geekbench 5 (single / multi)1742 / 47921737 / 46901158 / 34141097 / 3155846 / 33241124 / 37381119 / 36571085 / 3490

You may edit 4K movies at 60 frames per second in a buttery clean method on the tiny system, edit captured RAW footage, and luxuriate in all present cellular video games in most high quality everytime you let your hair down. Apple has not established itself as a home model for a lot of creatives for nothing, for the reason that producer doesn’t reduce corners both. For instance, the iPhone 13 mini proved to be a usable voice-over microphone at MWC 2022.

Nonetheless, it’s the firm’s rules (or pleasure?) which can be annoying relating to on a regular basis use. For instance, if I need to edit recorded movies, I can not merely take away a microSD card like in Sony’s Xperia Professional-I, however have to attach the cellphone by way of cable, import the movies by way of Photographs, after which export them as video information as soon as once more by way of the Photographs app. There are simply so many hoops to leap by way of!

NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Side
Even the MacBooks acknowledged that “Execs” actually use SD playing cards / © NextPit

Regardless that the lacking storage enlargement possibility shouldn’t be as related by way of storage expertise as it’s within the iPhone SE 2022, the entire thing continues to be inconvenient. On the identical time, I reward Apple for the choice to let the storage variants begin at 128 GB within the iPhone 13 collection. This will increase the price-to-performance ratio in comparison with the earlier 12 months.

Photographs & Movies: A dream for video followers

Apple makes use of its strongest twin digicam setup within the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13. It consists of a 12MP principal digicam that features sensor-shift picture stabilization and a quick lens, and a 12MP extremely wide-angle digicam. You may report movies utilizing each (!) cameras in 4K and 60 FPS, and selfies are additionally recorded at 12 MP decision.

What I preferred:

  • Strong picture high quality with all three cameras
    (selfie cam included).
  • Superb video high quality.
  • Wise software program options (photographic types, portrait modes and Cinematic Mode).

What I did not like:

  • Fingers seem incessantly in extremely wide-angle footage because of the small measurement.
  • Cinematic Mode information in Full HD at most solely.
  • Digital zoom shouldn’t be significantly convincing.
NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini Camera
The twin digicam proves to be an excellent level and shoot cam in on a regular basis life / © NextPit

Regardless that Apple’s digicam setup shouldn’t be spectacular when one takes a have a look at the specs, you do discover some relatively fascinating particulars. The primary digicam not solely gives a very quick lens at f/1.6, it additionally boasts picture stabilization by way of sensor shift expertise. This was a characteristic that was reserved for the iPhone 12 Professional Max within the earlier era. The iPhone 13 mini additionally carried out as a camcorder that gives superb high quality.

Each cameras on the again can report 4K footage with 60 frames per second. Even the Pixel 6 Professional, which I in contrast with the iPhone 13 Professional on the time and was thought of probably the greatest digicam telephones, switches to Full HD relating to the extremely wid-angle lens. So, those that wish to shoot movies don’t have to cope with high quality variations or upscaling.

Offered you’re ready to make do with out the Cinematic Mode, which sadly solely works in Full HD throughout all fashions. Apple churns out a deceptively actual bokeh impact in movies. The spotlight: You may alter each the main target and the diploma of blur within the Photographs app afterwards. This would possibly nonetheless be an excessive amount of for the A15 Bionic in 4K. Nonetheless, the standard loss is particularly annoying when mixing regular recordings and Cinematic Mode movies.

Regardless that the iPhone 13 mini doesn’t have the finest cellphone digicam of the 12 months, the standard may be very passable in all conditions. The cellphone’s compact measurement makes it excellent for snapshots, which makes it an excellent always-on digicam. Nonetheless, it’s annoying that your finger shortly slips into the picture if you find yourself not cautious when taking pictures utilizing the extremely wide-angle lens. It is a drawback of the small chassis, as a result of you need to contact the cellphone someplace to seize a photograph.

Battery & Fast-Charging: The one actual disadvantage of the iPhone 13 mini

Even when Apple doesn’t formally affirm it: the iPhone 13 mini has a very low capability battery at 2,406 mAh. Regardless that Apple ekes many hours of battery life out of the system with the energy-efficient A15 Bionic chipset, the battery life continues to stay at an obstacle in a small cellphone. Nonetheless, quick charging works relatively effectively regardless of a most charging pace of 25 watts.

What I preferred:

  • Quick charging instances due to the small battery.
  • MagSafe assist (a bonus over the iPhone SE 2022).
  • Wi-fi charging can also be attainable with out utilizing a proprietary Apple charger.

What I did not like:

  • Battery life is lower than a full day below heavy utilization.
  • Lightning connector is changing into more and more uncommon.

After a number of months of use, I’ve to declare that the battery lifetime of the iPhone 13 mini is its principal weak point. Nonetheless, that was to be anticipated, as this was already famous within the iPhone 12 mini’s evaluation. Personally, I take advantage of smartphones for music streaming, surf often, attend to prompt messaging packages, take a look at Instagram, snap photographs and make calls, together with video telephony, in the course of the day. Battery-guzzling duties like cellular gaming or Netflix streaming hardly occur for me.

Thus, the battery runtime was ample for me most often. Having some reserve left on the finish of the day would nonetheless be good as a result of I had a queasy feeling about leaving Berlin for Freiburg by automotive with the iPhone 13 mini on the finish of January. A route that takes just below 8.5 hours and through which I couldn’t constantly use the smartphone as a navigation system with out the assistance of a automotive charging cable.

NextPit Apple iPhone 13 Mini USB
Lightning nonetheless annoys me with the iPhones! / © NextPit

Nonetheless, I couldn’t use my charging cable solely given that Apple nonetheless sticks to its Lightning port in 2022. Whereas the charging port has a barely tighter match, it’s already fairly uncommon in my family and even within the Apple ecosystem. Most iPads and MacBook fashions, nearly all Android smartphones, and even most headphones will be charged by way of USB-C. For Apple, making the swap is tough. In any case, all AirPods headphones use the Lightning port, and all the time fascinated about two cable sorts has to cease in some unspecified time in the future, although.

If I proceed to make use of the iPhone 13 mini, I’ll due to this fact purchase a MagSafe-compatible energy financial institution. That is required since Apple additionally helps the Qi wi-fi charging customary regardless of its personal MagSafe customary, and I can, luckily, fall again to a third-party mannequin.

Remaining verdict

As an Android person proper from the start, the iPhone 13 mini has managed to persuade me of the iOS ecosystem, at the least in components. As a result of such a robust, high-quality, and versatile cellphone that communicates so cleverly with my MacBook is just accessible from Apple. For my part, the tiny display screen measurement is a plus, particularly for individuals who use their smartphone sparingly, for the reason that cellphone is hardly disturbing in on a regular basis life and can be utilized comfortably with only one hand.

NextPit Apple iPhone SE 2022 13 Mini Test
Between the 2 small iPhones, I select the 13 mini / © NextPit

Nonetheless, this won’t be attainable in 2022 with none compromises. Battery life is beneath common in comparison with bigger telephones because of the mini-sized battery. I’m additionally nervous concerning the battery’s longevity in the long term. As a result of what now lasts a day at most might develop into an issue after a number of hundred charging cycles. Motion pictures and particularly cellular video games are extra enjoyable to take pleasure in on smartphones with a bigger show space.

These often is the explanation why Apple’s iPhone 13 mini is promoting relatively poorly. The smartphone continues to be a shaky candidate in 2022. And like my academics again then, I am undecided if this little brat will make it into subsequent 12 months’s refreshed lineup. So the iPhone 13 mini, together with the SE, might be the final likelihood to purchase a small iPhone. So go for it in the event you see nice potential within the small type issue!

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