Device Advice – iPhone XS, XS Max and XR

Three new iPhones were launched on the 12th September, all of which surround Apple’s new 7nm A12 Bionic chip – set to improve device performance by up to 50%, Apple claims.

Unveiled at Apple’s annual hardware event, the iPhone XS, XS Max and XR will be the first devices to feature the Bionic chip and all will retain the notched display, first debuted by the iPhone X last year.

The iPhone XS is the direct successor of the iPhone X, debuting at 5.8 inches with an OLED screen, while the iPhone XS Max fulfils the role of the previous ‘plus’ range, at 6.5-inches, packing in 3.3 million pixels. The XS and XS Max devices offer the user Super Retina resolution screens and Dolby Vision, secured within surgical-grade stainless steel to reduce the impact of knocks and scratches.

The camera capabilities of a modern device are essential to remain competitive, and with Apple’s latest releases we find some interesting improvements over the iPhone X. A new image sensor, improved True Tone flash, Smart HDR and advanced depth control are all interesting features, but on paper competitors including Samsung’s Galaxy S9 and Note 9 have gone further. Cameras that feature variable aperture are on the increase, and Huawei’s P20 Pro offers users a 3x optical zoom and a triple lens camera, whilst Nokia is rumoured to be releasing a 5-lens configuration.

Battery life has also improved, albeit marginally with the XS offering an additional 30 minutes of life over the iPhone X, whilst the XS Max will reportedly last a further hour and a half.

The XR, the cheaper of the three devices launched, is perhaps the more financially accessible version of the iPhone. The XR has thicker bezels around the screen compared to the XS and XS Max and uses LCD technology over the OLED panels seen across the other releases.

Whilst Apple’s newest devices demonstrate more iterative changes rather than a revolutionary, the enhancements made to their latest offerings are welcome.  For iPhone users in general, or those looking to upgrade next year and beyond, Apple has also recently released iOS 12, bringing a new lease of life to older models along with vital ongoing security patches.

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