Following months of speculation and leaks, Apple took to the Steve Jobs theatre earlier today and revealed the not only the next generation of iPhone, but a new Apple Watch too. The iPhone XS, XS Max, XR, and Apple Watch Series 4 are official – carry on reading to find out all you need to know about the upcoming iPhones features.
iPhone XS and XS Max
The star of the announcement was undoubtedly the iPhone XS, along with the XS Max. The phone looks similar to that of 2017’s iPhone X, though with a handful of improvements. Let’s start with the obvious; the new range comes in two screen sizes, 5.8in and 6.5in respectively. Thankfully, that’s the only difference between the two smartphones (apart from price) as both feature Super Retina Displays and offer a pixel density of 458ppi.
It’s true in other departments too; the iPhone XS and XS Max both offer improved water resistance, now up to IP68, protecting your device in up to 2m of water for 30 minutes. Perfect if you accidentally drop your phone in a swimming pool!
Speaking of dropping the phone, the new iPhones feature the “most durable glass ever in a smartphone” according to Apple, though the company didn’t go into specifics as to how this was achieved. It should hopefully remedy the issue of shattering both the front and rear of the iPhone with a single drop!
The new range is faster than the iPhone X thanks to the new A12 Bionic chipset, the first 7nm chip in any smartphone. This provides improvements not only to general performance when browsing and gaming, but faster Face ID recognition and improved photography too. The storage has been upped too; the XS and XS Max are available in 64-, 256- and 512GB capacities.
Though the stats are largely the same in the camera department, there are minor performance improvements across all photo and video modes.
One impressive new feature is the Dual-Sim capability. It allows you to have two numbers in a single smartphone, ideal for those that travel abroad or those that want to combine work and personal numbers in a single device.
It consists of one physical SIM card slot and one eSIM slot. It’s the first time we’ve seen an eSIM slot on an iPhone, but it has been a feature of cellular iPads for some years. It allows you to change your provider depending on where you are in the world, providing access to cheap data and call rates while in another country.
Apple also announced the iPhone XR alongside the iPhone XS and XS Max, a more colorful iPhone range coming in October. The main highlight of the XR range is the color selection; it’s more vibrant than the premium range and harks back to Apple’s iPhone 5c, available in white, black, coral, Product Red, Blue, and Yellow.
Like the 5c line, the iPhone XR range is slightly cheaper than the XS, starting at $749 in the US. That’s appealing, especially when you consider that it features many of the same features as the iPhone XS. Let’s start with what’s the same; you get the same powerful A12 Bionic chipset, Face ID and Portrait mode, though there are some subtle changes in hardware.
The iPhone XR features a 6.1in edge-to-edge LCD ‘Liquid Retina’ display instead of the OLED Super Retina display, sporting a lower resolution of 1792×828 and a pixel density of 326ppi. 3D Touch has also been removed, replaced with ‘Haptic Touch’. You still get access to the 3D Touch features, but instead of pressing down to reveal the menu, you tap and hold until you feel haptic feedback.
On the rear, there’s a single 12Mp wide-angle camera, the same as one of the two cameras on the 10S and 10S Max. But despite being a single-camera setup, the iPhone XR can still offer Portrait mode with impressive results if Apple’s keynote images were anything to go by.