Apple iPhone 13 Demo Provides More Info on What to Actually Expect

Apple has shared a detailed video that goes over all of the main features of the four new versions of the iPhone 13 announced earlier this week. It’s not only helpful but also provides a closer look at some of the promised features.

Apple is rarely active on social media other than instances to promote products or services. In this case, the video is a guided tour of the iPhone 13 series. The video is broken into several chapters and is objectively one of the better ways the company has shown the differences among its product line in a way that’s easy for the average consumer to understand.

What it also does is show new clips of the features that are coming to the iPhone 13 devices, and may actually give a more realistic expectation of what those features will do than what was seen in the company’s live stream. Apple is famous for showing outstanding performance on stage and while its products are undoubtedly popular, some features do need to have expectations tempered.

For example, the video spends a minute and a half showing how to use the new Cinematic Mode and what it looks like in practice. To recap, Cinematic Mode is akin to a digital version of rack focusing. Rack focusing refers to shifting focus in a frame to draw the viewer’s eyes to different locations in a way that aids storytelling. This usually requires physical control of the lens, but Apple has added the ability to do this by using artificial intelligence that evaluates a scene in real-time. When a subject is about to enter the frame, the iPhone can sense that and move focus to them. When someone looks away from the camera, the iPhone will shift focus.

The demonstration starts at 1:30 in the video above and reveals the technology behind the feature, which looks like an implementation of the artificial Portrait mode bokeh in video.

A sliver of the brick wall behind the main subject is visibly in focus still as the iPhone software creates artificial bokeh.

When watched carefully, areas around the foreground subject’s head are a bit fuzzy with how they have been rendered to create a natural-looking bokeh, and the brick wall behind the actor is actually a bit in sharp focus around his face in a way that shows how Apple’s artificial intelligence works and, arguably, could still be improved.

The addition of this feature into video is still impressive, even if it’s not perfect. The videos that were shown during the Apple presentation (below) were cleaner, which might be due to the more advanced camera systems available on the iPhone 13 Pro. Eagle-eyed viewers might still see some of the effects of the software, but it’s more subtle. Until the smartphone series lands in the hands of reviewers though, this is all speculation.

The rest of the video demonstrates other features like low light performance, water resistance, battery life, the addition of Photographic Styles, macro photography, and the new telephoto zoom capabilities of the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max.

Pre-orders for the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max as well as the iPhone 13 and 13 mini smartphones starts today and devices will begin shipping on September 24.