Upgrading phones for the camera

The latest release of the iPhone this year has me thinking about my phone again. My previous model, the iPhone X, was chosen for its camera. Portrait mode blew me away. I bought an iPhone 12 Pro Max last year with one purpose in mind, to get a camera that could handle better low-light situations. As a father of two small children, I try my best to capture pictures of my kids in as many environments as possible. They’re getting a little older, 4 and 8, so asking them to hold still for a moment has become easier. Still, there’s something about being able to pull out my camera, press a button, and have a decent picture most of the time. My phone does that, and I love it.
Over the past year I’ve managed to take a lot of photos, and several dozen are images I can say that I’m quite proud of; some are of landscapes and outdoors shots, and the rest are of my family. Those are my two main purposes for wanting a phone with a great camera.
With that said, my current phone is massive. Even after a year I still feel that it’s a large phone, much more than I need. When I picked between the four available I went with the one that had the best low-light camera.
This year, with the iPhone 13, both pro models have identical cameras. And, based on reviews so far, it seems like a decent incremental upgrade over what I have today in terms of camera. In my mind I always run the decision tree of need versus want. This is absolutely a case of wanting the latest tech, but having something now that is more than sufficient.
So, first world problems and all, I’m at a bit of an impasse over whether to upgrade. Before I waited three years, and now I’ve been planning to wait two years. A funny thing starts to happen though, as my phone gets older. In the first year of purchase I take more photos and start to play with the latest changes. As time passes I take less. This is fine, I have so many great photos of my kids. However, I like to incentivize myself to take more and capture those moments. Each years the tech gets a little better and pushes the limits of what I can take.
I’ve all but stopped carrying around my DSLR. Granted, it’s a lower end model, but for years it caught the kinds of pictures my phone could only dream of. Now, based on my knowledge of the devices and the ease with which an iPhone allows capturing a shot, I’m often happier with what I can take on the phone, especially with it always being on me.
Since my goal is to get great pictures of my kids, and fun new technology enables that, I don’t feel too bad about the upgrades.
I may try and figure out a way to sell my phone and upgrade, but it’s a bit of a nightmare since I’m still on a plan through my phone carrier.