iPhone 13 vs 15: Time to upgrade?


iPhone 15 and 15 Plus are Apple’s latest non-pro smartphones that come with a number of new features. But are they worth the upgrade if you have an iPhone 13? Follow along for an in-depth look at the iPhone 13 vs 15 for everything that’s changed plus a buyer’s guide.

We’ll focus solely on iPhone 13 vs 15/Plus below, for a look at how the 13 Pro compares to the 15 Pro, and 15 vs 15 Pro, check out our dedicated guides:

iPhone 13 vs 15

Screen sizes and design

The screen sizes between the iPhone 13 and 15 remain the same at 6.1 inches. However, the 15 Plus offers a 6.7-inch option that wasn’t available with the iPhone 13 lineup without stepping up to the 13 Pro Max.

New with the iPhone 15 displays is the Dynamic Island and an outdoor brightness of up to 2000 nits.

Here’s the full look at the display specs for iPhone 13 vs iPhone 15:

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Size 6.1-inches 6.1-inches 6.7-inches
Resolution 2532 x 1170 pixels 2556 x 1179 pixels 2796 x 1290 pixels
PPI 460 ppi 460 ppi 460 ppi
Super Retina XDR OLED
Dynamic Island
ProMotionadaptive refresh up to 120Hz
Always-On display
Typical brightness 800 nits max 1000 nits max 1000 nits max
HDR brightness 1200 nits max 1600 nits max 1600 nits max
Outdoor brightness 2000 nits max 2000 nits max
True Tone
Haptic Touch
Wide color (P3)

The bezels on the iPhone 15 are also slimmer than the 13, which is what allows the very slight increase in pixels.

Size, weight, design

iPhone 15 wallpapers

Overall, the physical design of the iPhone 15 remains very similar to the 13, but Apple has given the 15 more rounded edges for a more comfortable feel.

And as mentioned above, you’ve now got the larger iPhone 15 Plus option.

For size, weight, and materials, here’s iPhone 13 vs 15:

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Height 5.78 inches (146.7 mm) 5.81 inches (147.6 mm) 6.33-inches (160.9 mm)
Width 2.82 inches (71.5 mm) 2.82 inches (71.6 mm) 3.06 inches (77.8 mm)
Thickness 0.30 inches (7.65 mm) 0.31 inches
(7.80 mm)
0.31 inches (7.80 mm)
Weight 6.14 ounces (174 grams) 6.02 ounces
(171 grams)
7.09 ounces (201 grams)
Durability IP68 (splash, dust, 6 meters of water up to 30 minutes IP68 (splash, dust, 6 meters of water up to 30 minutes IP68 (splash, dust, 6 meters of water up to 30 minutes
Ceramic Shield front
Back material Glass Glass Glass
Edges Aluminum Aluminum Aluminum

Of course, the new iPhones also come in new colors, we’ll get into that in detail below. Here are some options to protect the iPhone 15:

Performance – A16 vs A15 Bionic

iPhone 13 vs 15 performance

Here’s a breakdown of the iPhone 13 vs iPhone 15 chip specs: 

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
SoC A15 Bionic A16 Bionic A16 Bionic
CPU 6-core: 2 performance + 4 efficiency 6-core: 2 performance + 4 efficiency 6-core: 2 performance + 4 efficiency
GPU 4-core 5-core 5-core
Neural Engine 16-core 16-core 16-core
RAM 4GB 6GB 6GB

Both the A15 and A16 Bionic are powerful enough for almost everyone. But GeekBench offers a look at the performance difference between the A15 and A16 Bionic.

  • 16% faster single-core score
  • 21% faster multi-core score
  • 29% faster GPU
iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Single-core score 2188 2546 2559
Multi-core score 5181 6309 6371
Metal (GPU) score 17390 22456 22504

Battery life

iPhone 15 battery specs life

When it comes to battery life, the iPhone 15 has one hour longer battery for video playback than the 13 and 5 hours longer for audio playback.

The iPhone 15 Plus offers 7 hours longer video use and 25 hours more audio than iPhone 13.

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Video playback 19 hours 20 hours 26 hours
Audio playback 75 hours 80 hours 100 hours

For how that compares to iPhone 14 and more, check out our full post on iPhone 15 battery life:

iPhone 13 vs 15 cameras

iPhone 13 vs 15 cameras

Rear cameras

iPhone 15 and 15 Plus come with a 48MP main rear camera, next-gen portrait with Focus and Depth Control, Smart HDR 5, and more.

The iPhone 15/Plus main camera also has more powerful sensors and supports shooting both 24 and 48MP “super-high-resolution photos.”

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Main lens 12MP, ƒ/1.6 aperture 48MP, ƒ/1.6 aperture 48MP, ƒ/1.6 aperture
Main lens sensor 1.9 µm pixel 2 µm pixel 2 µm pixel
Ultra Wide lens 12MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture 12MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture 12MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture
Telephoto lens
Stabilization Sensor-shift optical image stabilization Sensor-shift optical image stabilization Sensor-shift optical image stabilization
Optical zoom 0.5x, 1x 0.5x, 1x, 2x 0.5x, 1x, 2x
Flash True Tone flash with Slow Sync True Tone flash True Tone flash
Photonic Engine
Deep Fusion
Smart HDR 4
Smart HDR 5
Next-gen portraits with Focus and Depth Control
Portrait Lighting with six effects
Night mode
Night mode portraits
Photographic Styles
Apple ProRAW

Video recording

Video recording

The main new feature for video recording with the iPhone 15/Plus compared to iPhone 13 is Action mode.

The other new video features this year are reserved for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max.

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
4K recording ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps
1080p recording ✅ – at 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 25, 30, or 60 fps
Cinematic mode ✅ – up to 1080p at 30 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 30 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 30 fps
Action mode
HDR/Dolby Vision recording ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps
ProRes recording
Log video recording
Macro video recording
Spatial video recording
Slo-mo recording ✅ –1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps ✅ –1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps ✅ –1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps
Time-lapse with stabilization
Night mode Time-lapse
QuickTake video
Stabilization Sensor-shift optical image stabilization for video Sensor-shift optical image stabilization for video Sensor-shift optical image stabilization for video
Audio zoom
Stereo recording

Selfie camera

Apple’s TrueDepth front camera on the iPhone 15 gets a mix of upgrades found on the main rear camera.

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
TrueDepth front camera 12MP, ƒ/2.2 aperture 12MP, ƒ/1.9 aperture 12MP, ƒ/1.9 aperture
Retina Flash
Photonic Engine
Deep Fusion
Smart HDR 4 for photos
Smart HDR 5 for photos
Next-gen portraits with Focus and Depth Control
Portrait Lighting with six effects
Animoji and Memoji
Night mode
Photographic Styles
4K recording ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps ✅ – at 24, 25, 30, or 60 fps
Cinematic mode ✅ – up to 1080p at 30 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 30 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 30 fps
HDR/Dolby Vision recording ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps ✅ – up to 4K HDR at 60 fps
ProRes recording
Slo-mo recording ✅ – 1080p at 120 fps ✅ – 1080p at 120 fps ✅ – 1080p at 120 fps
QuickTake video
Cinematic video stabilization ✅ – for 4K, 1080p, 720p ✅ – for 4K, 1080p, 720p ✅ – for 4K, 1080p, 720p

iPhone 13 vs 15 I/O

iPhone 13 vs 15 I/O

The major change for iPhone 15 I/O is the switch from Lightning to USB-C.

Unfortunately, it’s only the 15 Pro and Pro Max that offer much faster transfer speeds with USB 3 support at up to 10Gbps. The 15 and 15 Plus have USB 2 speeds up to 480Mbps.

Two more differences between the iPhone 15 vs 13 include Bluetooth and UWB upgrades.

iPhone 13 iPhone 15 iPhone 15 Plus
Lightning ✅ – with speeds up to 480Mbps
USB-C ✅ – USB 2 with speeds up to 480Mbps ✅ – USB 2 with speeds up to 480Mbps
Face ID
WiFi 6 6 6
Bluetooth 5.0 5.3 5.3
Ultra wideband ✅ – gen 1 ✅ – gen 2 ✅ – gen 2
NFC with reader mode
Cellular GSM/EDGE, UMTS/HSPA+, DC-HSDPA GSM/EDGE, UMTS/HSPA+, DC-HSDPA GSM/EDGE, UMTS/HSPA+, DC-HSDPA
5G Sub-6 GHz and mmWave with 4×4 MIMO Sub-6 GHz and mmWave with 4×4 MIMO Sub-6 GHz and mmWave with 4×4 MIMO
GPS GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BeiDou GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BeiDou GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BeiDou
Audio playback Spatial audio/Dolby Atmos Spatial audio/Dolby Atmos Spatial audio/Dolby Atmos
Video playback HDR with Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG HDR with Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG HDR with Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG
SIM Two active eSIMs or nano-SIM and eSIM Dual eSIM in US – physical included for most other countries Dual eSIM in US – physical included for most other countries
MagSafe
Qi and Qi2 Yes and uncertain Yes and yes? Yes and yes?

Whether the new iPhone 15 devices will support Qi2, Apple is saying yes but it’s a bit confusing:

So it’s also unclear if iPhone 13 will support Qi2.

Safety

iPhone 15 has two more advanced safety features than iPhone 13 Pro:

iPhone 13 iPhone 15/Plus
Emergency SOS
Crash Detection
Roadside Assistance via satellite

iPhone 15 colors

iPhone 15 and 15 Plus come in these five colors:

  • Black
  • Blue
  • Green
  • Yellow
  • Pink

Storage and pricing

iPhone 15/Plus comes in these storage options:

  • 128GB – $799 / $899 
  • 256GB – $899 / $999
  • 512GB – $1,099 / $1,199

What’s in the box?

What's in the box

iPhone 15/Plus comes with the iPhone and a USB-C cable in the box.

If you need a power adapter, go with at least a 20W so you get fast charging for your iPhone. Good options include:

iPhone 13 vs 15: Buyer’s guide

The iPhone 15 and 15 Plus are fantastic smartphones, but whether upgrading from the 13 is worth it for you will depend on how you want to use your iPhone and what features you find important.

Reasons to consider upgrading to iPhone 15 or 15 Plus:

  • More powerful and capable cameras
  • Dynamic Island
  • USB-C
  • Faster chip and more powerful GPU for mobile gaming
  • Crash Detection and Roadside assistance via satellite

What do you think? Are the upgrades enough to switch to iPhone 15? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Thanks for reading our guide on iPhone 13 vs 15!

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