As you might have already seen and heard, Apple today has finally revealed the brand new iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max and the more affordable iPhone Xr.
The brand new devices come with upgraded chipsets, more storage and a lot of enhancements and improvements over last year’s iPhone X.
In case you haven’t yet read our Thoughts about the iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max, now it would be a good time to do so.
First and foremost, let’s talk about the specifications. In case you are not yet aware, the ‘budget’ iPhone Xr will sport most of the same specs as the new iPhone Xs or the iPhone Xs Max, except a few caveats – but more on that later.
The iPhone Xr is powered by the very same A12 Bionic chipset but with 3GB of RAM (instead of 4GB) and the base storage will start at same 64GB but will only be available in 128GB and 256GB – no 512GB option if that’s what you’re looking for, you have to pick the Xs or the Xs Max for that.
Another caveat is the display. The Xs line-up both support OLED displays while the Xr sticks to LCD. Apple promises HDR capability and “the best LCD ever” on a smartphone with the most colour accurate display – judging by the past, we trust Apple has really done their best to calibrate the LCD panel to be one of the very best of its kind. It also supports 120Hz but sadly it does not have 3D touch – instead it has a Haptic motor that is similar to a mousepad on a Macbook.
The sad part is that the 6.1″ LCD panel isn’t even 1080p, in fact it only has 822 x 1792 (326 ppi). We’re not saying that it’s bad, but at this price we would have expect a better resolution.
There is a single camera on the back that is 12MP with f/1.8 aperture, wide-angle lens OIS and Quad-LED lights. Just like on the high-end iPhones, you can adjust the bokeh’s blur effect after taking a photo and it also support Smart HDR (to provide better focus, exposure and many other detail levels in brightly lit/dark areas).
The selfie shooter is also the same 7MP sensor that can be found on the Xs series and it allows for 1080p 60fps recording.
As you’d expect, the Xr comes with the same FaceID technology that can be found on the Xs and the Xs Max – no compromise on security. The TouchID has been fully retired from iPhones and can now be only found on the latest Macbooks and hopefully on the upcoming Macbook Air – which should be revealed at a seperate event later this year.
The iPhone Xr supports Bluetooth 5.0, Wireless charging and of course, no headphone jack. Luckily it does feature an IP67 certificate that should allow withstanding small amounts of water and dust – so that’s a plus. A Dual-SIM variant will also be available in the Chinese market while we also expect that other markets on the west will receive an eSim support – although this hasn’t been confirmed by Apple, so it’s unclear as of right now.
As is the case for the iPhone Xs and Xs Max, the Xr comes with a 5W wall adapter and a Lighting to USB-A cable. Apple started the trend with USB-C on Macbooks but it doesn’t seem to follow it by including and allowing their customers to charge their devices with the new standard – that’s really a shame!
iPhone XR will be available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB models in white, black, blue, yellow, coral and (PRODUCT)RED starting at $749, £749, €849 (DE).
The iPhone Xr will be up for pre-order from 19 October and available from 26 October in the following countries: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Japan, Jersey, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the UAE, UK, US and US Virgin Islands.
Overall, we are happy with the new iPhone Xr but there are certainly a few things that we dislike about it. Sure, the price is more affordable and cheaper, but we think that it should have been priced more fairly – since it does introduce a lot of compromises such as: single camera, no 3D touch, no OLED, low resolution LCD panel and so on… We think it should have been priced at about $649, £649 to make up for the compromises but at it’s current price – we can’t yet recommend it – until reviews are out of course. If the display and the camera prove themselves to be worthy, we will say it’s worth an upgrade for someone with a fairly recent iPhone or maybe even and older one, but until all tests are done, we simply would recommend avoiding it.
The iPhone Xr reminds us very much of the iPhone 5c with its vibrant colours and at-the-time recent specs, but with a much higher price that is hard to swallow with such compromises.
What are your thoughts about the iPhone Xr? Is this ‘budget’ Apple device something you are expected and are excited for? Let us know in the comments down below!