The iPhone 13 to Feature “Cinematic Video" and ProRes Recording

iPhone 13 Cinematic Video
Credit: Apple
Sounds like Apple’s 2021 iPhone is “betting” big on video…

There’s that darned word again! According to reports on Bloomberg, Apple’s highly anticipated new 2021 iPhone line (which we’re going to go ahead and assume will be called the iPhone 13) is pulling out all the stops for video.

They’ve even added the buzzword of buzzwords right now in the film and video industry by teasing a new “cinematic video” feature, which should function similar to their familiar “portrait mode” for photography.

This new iPhone 13 is also going to reportedly include ProRes video support and some new photography editing options as well.

Is this anything filmmakers should get excited about though? Let’s explore…

iPhone 13 Cinematic Video

As discussed in a previous article about camera movement and grip rigs, this term “cinematic” appears to be thrown around more and more these days. Apple, not one to be outdone in the buzz category, appears to have noticed.

According to the reports, Apple plans to try to capitalize on the success they found with the portrait photography mode, which they first introduced with the iPhone 7 Plus in 2016. 

This mode, which many have undoubtedly used, and even more should probably recognize on Instagram or the like, features a technique where the subject is kept in sharp focus while the background is blurred in a bokeh effect—you know, kind of like a portrait!

The iPhone’s depth sensor will feature the logical next step for this technology as the new iPhone will include a similar portrait mode for video, which has already been “internally dubbed Cinematic Video.”

iPhone Filmmaking
An iPhone being used on the production of Sean Baker's 'Tangerine' (2015).Credit: Magnolia Pictures

New ProRes Video Recording

Yet, while this cinematic video news might steal the headline, the bigger news might be the reported inclusion of new ProRes video recording capabilities. 

Certainly, iPhone filmmaking has been doable for several years now, but smartphones in general have always been limited in terms of recording capabilities and quality. This new higher-quality ProRes format could possibly be a game-changer though.

We’ll have to see what these recording specs truly look like though as more information becomes available. 

iPhone 13 Camera News
Credit: Forbes

Other iPhone 13 News and Features

So far, though, outside of some new filters and updates for photography and reports of a new ultra-wide-angle camera lens, it doesn't sound like we have a full scope of what the new iPhone 13 is set to include. If Apple is indeed pivoting to video—and if they truly want filmmakers, video professionals, or digital content creators to take notice—there still might be more news on the way.

No word though on how Martin Scorsese feels about his iPhone now suddenly being able to record “cinematic video” yet… but we’ll keep you posted!

In the meantime, let us know how you feel about this new ProRes video and cinematic features news makes you feel. Any more or less interested in potentially using the iPhone 13 for your film or video projects?

Let us know in the comments below!     

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Your Comment


Yoooooo, I doubt that header image came from Apple.

August 11, 2021 at 1:39PM, Edited August 11, 1:40PM


what a load of krap. no self-respecting (smartphone) filmmaker would use this to make films, achieve "cinematic video" or anything else related to creative. this is the world's most expensive point and shoot toy, and once again: apple is targetting vloggers and soccer moms, and not actual filmmakers.
so this is a fake depth of field; it artificially and arbitrarily blurs out background and sharpens foreground ... not quite the same as adjusting shutter speed and aperture to achieve the real thing.

add this to the feature that practically forces HDR candy colours on your footage ... and the feature --- that you can't override --- that arbitrarily and ham-handedly balances out the exposure in your shots ... whether you like it or not.

filmmaking tool my @$$.

August 12, 2021 at 8:03AM, Edited August 12, 8:03AM


…and it’s almost time to get a new phone. Pretty cool prospectus.

August 12, 2021 at 8:27AM

David 2

With the iPhone 13 mobile phone it will help in making "Cinematic Videos" and ProRes Recording becomes more helpful

August 12, 2021 at 7:31PM

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