iPhone 13 could be thicker to fit larger batteries

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This is a CAD drawing supposedly showing the iPhone 13 notch
The 120Hz screen in the iPhone 13 might require a heftier battery.,
Screenshot: Jon Prosser/Front Page Tech

An improved display in the iPhone 13 series reportedly will force Apple to put in a larger battery, making the upcoming handsets slightly thicker.

This could mean we finally get an iPhone screen with a 120Hz refresh rate. The faster rate makes the user interface of a phone or tablet just a bit smoother and more responsive.

iPhone 13 with 120Hz screen is a challenge

Apple cut the 120Hz display from the iPhone 12 series because it put too much strain on the battery, notes Jon Prosser in Wednesday’s Front Page Tech video.

But Apple is increasing battery capacities in all four of the iPhone 13 models, reports 9to5Mac. The Pro Max will supposedly go up a whopping 18%, the 6.1-inch Pro and non-Pro model will increase 9.9%, and the mini’s battery will increase by 8%.

There’s a downside to this, according to Prosser. “According to the latest, most up-to-date CAD files that I have personally for the iPhone 13 and 13 Pro, the actual devices are slightly thicker to accommodate that larger battery,” he said.

However, this goes somewhat against a March report from TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. His sources in Apple’s supply chain agree that iPhone 13 battery capacities will increase. But he said there’ll be no increase in size, “thanks to the space-saving design of many components.”

A thicker handset would force accessory makers to design new cases just for the iPhone 13. Ones made for the iPhone 12 wouldn’t fit.

Prosser’s CAD files also show the screen notch in Apple’s upcoming handsets will shrink a bit, and there’s evidence to back this up.

Questions about the iPhone 13’s 120Hz screen refresh rate and battery size likely won’t be settled until September. That’s when Apple likely will officially unveil the next-generation iOS handset.