iPhone 15 Pro Max vs 13 Pro Max: How Do They Compare? 24/10/23

By Holly, Mozillion Team

The latest iPhone 15 Pro Max brings with it some impressive new camera updates, but what else?

So the new iPhone 15 Pro Max has been unveiled and we have all the details confirmed but how does it compare to previous iPhones?

If you currently own an iPhone 13 Pro Max, you may be considering an upgrade, let’s compare the two models.

Dynamic Island


The iPhone 13 Pro Max doesn’t support Dynamic Island but the new iPhone 15 Pro Max does, which may or may not be important to you.

Dynamic Island is the Apple-term for its interactive notifications bar at the top of the screen that is used to hide the camera notch. Like a virtual personal assistant, it adapts in real-time on your screen to display important alerts, notifications and activities. You can control everything such as tracking your takeaway delivery, where you are in your podcast, multiple conversations with friends and your Airpod connection status, all in one place.

Our view? It’s not enough reason alone to choose the 15 Pro Max over the 13 Pro Max, its a nice-to-have but you’ll get on fine without it.

USB-C is now standard on the 15 Pro Max

Everyone knew this was going to happen but it’s now officially confirmed – the new iPhone 15 series features a USB-C port to replace the lightning port that has been used on iPhones for years.

USB-C is the same connection port you find on most Android phones, MacBooks, iPads and more so it’s nice to see it standardised on the iPhone 15 series too so we can all use the same cables.

The iPhone 13 series still includes the trusty lightning port so you’ll need a lightning cable to charge that model. They usually come with one, and if you’re a long-term iPhone user, you’ve no doubt got loads.

Processing power


The iPhone 15 Pro Max features the new Apple A17 Pro chip which is the first in the world to use the cutting-edge 3nm tech. The iPhone 13 Pro Max is powered by the A15 which is still super powerful but essentially two generations behind – due to Apple being pretty good when it comes to processor efficiency, you’ll find the 13 Pro Max still zips along and handles most demanding apps easily though.

You will be pleased to hear that the iPhone 13 Pro Max will run the same iOS 17 software as the iPhone 15 Pro Max despite being a slightly older model.

Both also have 5G connectivity support, but a new feature only available on the 15 Pro Max is satellite connectivity, which allows you to send an emergency SOS message in places where you have no cell phone coverage.

More megapixels


Not to say the camera set up on the iPhone 13 Pro Max isn’t impressive because it absolutely is but the entire iPhone 15 series has had a whopping 48MP (megapixel) main rear camera upgrade. You may already know that the iPhone 15 Pro improves on the iPhone 15 when it comes to camera setup – well, the iPhone 15 Pro Max continues this theme with further upgrades over the 15 Pro.

In fact, the iPhone 15 Pro Max boasts the longest optical zoom ever on iPhone 5x compared with 3x with the iPhone 15 Pro. This level of telephoto optical zoom is ideal for sports or wildlife photography and the iPhone 15 Pro Max also boasts an innovative tetraprism design with a combined optical image stabilisation and autofocus 3D sensor-shift module. Basically a pro-level photographer’s dream-come-true.

The iPhone 13 Pro Max has a formidable camera setup too however, with excellent low-light performance and computational photography features and will still be an excellent choice for most people. Looking at photos just on the phones’ screens, you’re not going to notice a massive amount of difference for daily snapping.

iPhone 15 Pro Max vs iPhone 13 Pro Max: Summary

They’re very similar, although one notably costs a fair bit less – especially if you buy it refurbished. The main upgrades you’re paying for on the iPhone 15 Pro Max are the new and improved 48MP main camera, Dynamic Island, titanium build frame, a faster chip and of course USB-C connectivity.

No doubt the iPhone 13 Pro Max will continue to be a great option for many over the next few years as Apple keep their iPhones relevant and supported for years longer than other manufacturers.

At the fundamental level, the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 13 Pro Max are incredibly similar; they feel fast and fluid and they both have solid battery life but if the very latest camera tech and spec is important to you, then the 15 Pro Max of course has the upper hand.