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iPhone 13 release date tipped for September 24 [Update]

iPhone 12 Pro Max review
(Image credit: Future)

If you've been dreaming of getting a hold of the iPhone 13 just as soon as it becomes available, we could be less than a month away from having one of Apple's new phones land in your hand — at least if Front Page Tech and a Korean e-commerce app are to be believed.

According to Front Page Tech, the September 17 date will actually be the pre-order date, with the iPhone 13 launching on September 24. This further adds onto the original leak from earlier. The original article follows with the information gathered from the Korean e-commerce app. 

An image from that app, first posted to Weibo by Chinese site IT Home, claims that the iPhone 13 will ship on Friday, Sept. 17. Apple will apparently follow up that release with the AirPods 3 on Sept. 30, according to the report which was spotted by MacRumors.

"Because a Korean e-commerce app said so" is generally not accepted as indisputable evidence, but the timing lines up with other rumors we've heard about the iPhone 13 launch. It's generally accepted that Apple is going to unveil its phones in September, with additional reports from analysts claiming that the Apple plans to release the new phone during the third week of the month.

iPhone 13 release date

(Image credit: IT Home)

When we sat down to figure out the iPhone 13 release date based on past Apple product roll-outs, we settled on Tuesday, Sept. 14 as the most likely date. (Apple tends to hold events on Tuesdays, with the fall iPhone launch typically happening within the first two weeks of a month; an earlier Tuesday, Sept. 6, falls the day after Labor Day in the U.S.) Assuming our guess is a good one and that this leaked screenshot is legit, that would mean Apple would take iPhone 13 pre-orders on Sept. 17, a few days after the launch event. That's an aggressive launch schedule, but not an unprecedented one. Front Page Tech has corroborated this.

Where the Korean e-commerce app's story begins to unravel a bit is the claim that the AirPods 3 wouldn't arrive until Sept. 30. Considering Apple will position this new generation of wireless earbuds as an iPhone 13 accessory, staggering the launch to two weeks after the iPhone 13's seems unlikely. Furthermore, Sept. 30 falls on a Thursday — Apple tends to make its products available on Fridays.

That said, these are uncertain times in the tech world, with chip shortages delaying product launches of all kinds. While the iPhone 13 will reportedly be immune from such delays, it's possible other Apple products such as the AirPods 3 will appear at a latter time. We're not sure we buy that, but it's not outside the realm of possibility.

New iPhone 13 upgrades and changes to expect

Like the iPhone 12 lineup, we're looking at four different iPhone 13 models similar in size to the current versions. The iPhone 13 Pro models are expected to see the biggest changes, with an improved ultrawide camera lens and ProMotion displays that refresh at 120Hz. The iPhone 13 Pro series is also tipped to feature always-on displays.

All four iPhone 13 models are likely to feature smaller notches on their displays, and the lower-cost iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini could adopt the LiDAR sensor found on the Pro versions of Apple's smartphone. We're also expected a faster and more efficient A15 Bionic chip, a faster 5G modem and larger batteries for all iPhone 13 models.

Of all the iPhone 13 upgrades we've hear about, some of the most exciting rumors point to new computational photography features. These include a possible portrait video mode and astrophotography mode for shooting the night sky. 

More Apple products anticipated this fall 

Apple figures to be very busy this fall. In addition to the iPhone 13 and AirPods 4, the company is also expected to release the Apple Watch 7, this year's update to its smartwatch lineup. New iPads, such as an iPad mini 6 and 9th gen iPad for schools, could also be on the agenda as could an updated MacBook Pro. It's unclear if Apple would introduce all these products at once or stagger the releases throughout the fall as its done in the past.

Even if you don't buy into the proposed iPhone 13 release schedule laid down by Front Page Tech and the Korean e-commerce app, it's clear we're going to see Apple's phone sooner rather than later. We're keeping our ear to the ground for additional rumors on what to expect so be sure to visit our iPhone 13 hub for all the latest news and leaks.

Philip Michaels
Philip Michaels is a senior editor at Tom's Guide. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics and old movies. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.