iPhone 13 Mini test: Apple's latest one holds up… and charges

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Carlos Priora
@carlospriora
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The iPhone 13 Mini is the smallest ambassador of the 2021 lineup of Apple smartphones. An Oled screen terminal, compatible with 5G, whose increased autonomy compared to that of its predecessor is the main asset.

Presentation

Petit Poucet of Apple's 13 series, the iPhone 13 Mini is the second version of Apple's "small" smartphone, after the iPhone 12 Mini released last year. The mobile terminal is similar to the iPhone 13 that we also tested, except for its much more compact format and less substantial battery. It is therefore a choice option for those who intend to store their smartphone in their pocket or use it with one hand without contortion.



Like its predecessor when it was released, the iPhone 13 Mini costs €809, but gains additional storage since its basic version now includes 128 GB of internal memory. This is followed by a 256 GB version (929 €) and a 512 GB model (1159 €), all available in pink, blue, black, white or red. Remember that to benefit from 1 TB of storage, you have to turn to the iPhone 13 Pro or the iPhone 13 Pro Max, housed in better shape on this point.




The iPhone 13 (in blue) and the iPhone 13 Mini (in pink).

Ergonomics and design

The iPhone 13s do not usher in a new design and the iPhone 13 Mini is no exception. Apple's smartphone looks just like the 12 Mini, except for the layout of its back photo block (the modules are now aligned diagonally) and its slightly greater thickness. It measures 131,5 x 64,2 x 7,7 mm when its eldest did not exceed 7,4 mm.


Its weight is affected, but very little. The smallest of the 2021 iPhones weighs 141 g against 135 g for its predecessor. In the game of the seven differences, we note the appearance of new colors (pink and blue in particular), but also the slightly reduced size of the notch located at the top of its screen.


For the rest, it's the same: Apple delivers a mobile terminal with excellent manufacturing quality, glass back and aluminum edges, which we retain the IP68 certification. Let's add that this iPhone 13 Mini is equipped with the traditional Lightning socket, USB-C not having entered Apple's specifications. It dials without a jack plug and is delivered without a power supply. It's basically the exact copy of the iPhone 13 tested here, but in a reduced format thanks to the choice of a 5,4-inch screen.

Screen

The iPhone 13 Pro benefit from a new generation of LTPO-type Oled screens and thus benefit from an adaptive refresh rate, capable of rising up to 120 Hz. The classic iPhone 13 and Mini retain a refresh at 60 Hz standard, without evolution therefore if we compare them to the iPhone 12.


The Mini model that interests us here has a 5,4-inch Oled panel occupying some 85% of the front of the device. Its notch, less wide by 20% than that of the previous iPhones, remains imposing, alas, and it will probably be necessary to wait for generation 14 of the headed creature to witness a passage to the punch, or even to the sensors under the screen…


Colorimetry 1

Be that as it may, the panel chosen by Apple is technically flawless. Its default calibration, which you have to be satisfied with because the display is not configurable, is simply excellent. We noted a delta E of 1, as on the other iPhones, which testifies to practically non-existent colorimetric drifts. The color temperature is 6694 K, flirting very closely with the reference video standard (6500 K). Added to this is a maximum brightness of around 850 cd/m² with very limited reflections, which ensures excellent readability of this screen even in direct sunlight. It should be noted that the tactile delay noted in the lab does not exceed 31 ms and that the persistence time is non-existent. You will therefore have understood it, it is the shortcomings of this screen (refresh rate at 120 Hz, punch) that sadden us. For the rest, the slab keeps its promises perfectly.

performances

The iPhone 13 Mini is equipped with the A15 Bionic chip designed by Apple. It is always flanked by 4 GB of RAM. Equipment identical to that of the classic iPhone 13, which we invite you to consult the test, and which fulfills its function just as well.

Photo

Here again, the iPhone 13 Mini borrows its characteristics from the iPhone 13. It is therefore equipped with a double photo module comprising two 12-megapixel sensors, one of which is supplemented by a wide-angle (f / 1,6) and the other by an ultra wide-angle (f / 2,4). The set is effective, although it does not offer the versatility of high-end smartphones in the Android world, and draws its strength from its ease of use. Note that the wide-angle module of the iPhone 13 Mini is, like that of the iPhone 13, inherited from that of the iPhone 12 Pro Max. Our comparison, which confirms the similarity of their photo performance, awaits you.

For more details, we refer you to the test of the iPhone 13, to be found below.

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Autonomy

Who says compact smartphone says small battery. The iPhone 13 Mini is therefore entitled to a 2438 mAh battery, when that of the 12 Mini displayed 2227 mAh. A small gain in capacity undoubtedly associated with better software optimization which allows the whole to hold, subject to our Netflix protocol, 18 h 44 min before extinction. This is more than two hours saved compared to the iPhone 12 Mini and, above all, the assurance of ending the day without fear of running out of fuel.

If there is better in the radius of autonomy, do not count on a revolution in terms of charging. To reach 100% with a 20 W charger, we had to wait 1 h 34 min. Faced with competition which, often at a lower price, offers 33 W, 65 W, or even a little more, this service leaves us unsatisfied.

Repairability

iPhones are not among the smartphones with the best repairability indices. With an index of 6,2, the iPhone 13 Mini however gains 0,2 points compared to the 12, because dismantling some of its components is a little easier than in 2020. For the rest, it loses points in which requires the use of complex tools for its dismantling. Its spare parts are also a bit expensive considering the price of the new smartphone, but the iPhone 13 Mini compensates with comprehensive software information and remote support.

Sustainability

Our sustainability score helps determine the sustainable aspect of the smartphone for both the consumer and the environment. It is based on the repairability index, durability criteria (protection index, standard connectors, warranty period and updates, etc.) and an assessment of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policies. . You will find all the details of the analysis in our article presenting the sustainability score.

Highlights

  • Always nice compact size.

  • Perfectly calibrated Oled screen.

  • Successful wide-angle photos.

  • Autonomy significantly increased compared to that of the 12 Mini.

  • Excellent performance.

Weak points

  • Charging not very fast (and no charger provided).

  • Notch still present and very visible.

Conclusion

Note globale

The iPhone 13 Mini retains the attractive format of the iPhone 12 Mini, aimed at lovers of small formats. Its qualities are undeniable: perfectly calibrated Oled screen, power of its A15 Bionic chip at the rendezvous. It also allows you to capture beautiful wide-angle shots and, above all, its autonomy, without classifying it among the endurance champions of the moment, is now very suitable. However, the 13 Mini comes with its share of small frustrations: the charging time is not its forte, its notch is still very present and its photo block evolves discreetly compared to that of last year. In short, this 2021 vintage is successful, but only improves the iPhone 12 Mini by small touches.

Sub Notes
  • Ergonomics and design
  • Screen
  • performances
  • Photo
  • Autonomy
  • Repairability
  • Sustainability
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