The much anticipated Apple Special Event has got over, launching a series of next-generation devices. This time Apple decided to simplify its iPhone lineup. The company brings us two expensive iPhones; iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max and a budget iPhone named the iPhone XR. Now the budget is something relative for Apple, so just don’t expect an iPhone over the OnePlus 6 because it calls itself a budget iPhone.
The launches of this year’s iPhone are in contrast to the lineup of last year as we witnessed two relatively affordable iPhones i.e. iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus and one expensive model, the iPhone X. This time Apple deliberated for changing its naming scheme and instead of numbers they move to two successor model names; iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. Given the names, we also find that Apple has also got rid of the plus appellation, and so instead of its plus tag it proposes to keep XS ‘Max’.
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The new trio of the latest smartphones got its design revealed at the Steve Jobs Theater on its Cupertino campus, exactly a year after the tech giant debuted its iPhone X device. “The iPhone X described our vision for the smartphone, we’re extending that vision across three new products” – Apple’s chief design officer Jonathan Ive, during a video presentation.
The iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max follow the same design that we saw on the X phone last year. Of the two phones, the iPhone XS is design-wise exactly same as the iPhone X. It uses same surgery-grade stainless steel, is as shiny as they come with a mirror finish on the frame and back cover, and has the same OLED screen. Keeping the two phones aside, you’ll find it difficult to identify them apart. The only new bit this year design-wise is the new gold color, which is slightly bronze. This is a really subtle color worth appreciating. People who love gaudy colors will definitely admire this. The XR is a no-notch iPhone available in white, black, blue, yellow, coral, and red that comes in aluminum rather than stainless steel.
The XS has a 5.8-inch screen – the same size as the X, and as the iPhone 8 Plus but on a smaller device overall. The XS Max touts a 6.5-inch display, making it the same size as the 8 Plus. Apple blatantly boasts the iPhone XS Max as the largest display ever on an iPhone developed in stainless steel to create structural bands in three finishes. In between, iPhone also brings its cheaper model; the iPhone XR that measures 6.1 inches corner-to-corner that has a Liquid Retina Display rather than the Super Retina screens of the other two devices.
All of the phones are good to hold although people with smaller hands might think twice of iPhone XS Max due to its 6.5-inch screen. Its extra screen size will come more from the height rather than from additional width hence not making it an issue. iPhone XS has its round edges making it a much better feeling in hand as compared to a phone like the Galaxy Note 9.
The trio model comes with the new Apple A12 Bionic processor, which is made using 7nm fab tech. The new iPhones are first phones to have this kind of processor. Theoretically, the new A12 Bionic makes the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR, the fastest phones ever in the history performing much better than last year’s model. In terms of performance, Apple has always been on the epitome and I still consider that performance is going to be an area where the new iPhones will not give a single reason to complain.
The camera has always been a bigger concern for mobile users and iPhone has always stood by its expectation. It shows a new 12-megapixel image sensor with large 1.4um pixels in the trio phones and Apple is promising dramatically better details, dynamic range and colors in the photos clicked with the primary camera of the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max. However XR is missing the zoom camera, but it still offers the portrait mode feature using some AI and smart software tricks, similar to how Google does it on Pixel phones that too come with a single camera.
As for the front facing camera, XR has got an update to Apple’s TrueDepth system from the iPhone XS, with a 7-megapixel sensor that allows for Face ID as well as features like portrait mode selfies, Animoji, and others. It is the same improved system as featured on the XS model, with faster Face ID unlocking.
A powerful battery is a must for the smartphones. Apple has enhanced the battery performance for the trio model making it much better as compared to the battery in the iPhone X, confirmed by the company iPhone XS offers 30 minutes extra battery life. In case of the iPhone XS Max, this extra battery provides 90 minutes more usage time. The internal storage is really commendable with 512 GB variant but it will cost extra and also the dual SIM feature improvised will definitely make users happy.
In reference to the three phones; they are quite similar to earlier iPhones in their design, it is their new cameras and the A12 Bionic that is going to define them. As far as the impression lies, the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and the iPhone XR will please the iPhone fans because they continue with everything that has won phones like the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X millions of the satisfied consumers. In short, the three models are iPhone better made and not iPhone reinvented.