The iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR are Apple's flagship phones for 2018
The dust is settling on this year's Apple iPhone launch event, and we've got three new handsets for 2018 to consider: The standard 5.8-inch OLED iPhone XS, the super-sized 6.5-inch OLED iPhone XS Max, and the cheaper 6.1-inch LCD iPhone XR. Here's what you need to know about them.
All three phones adopt the iPhone X styling we saw last year, which means display notches, Face ID unlocking, and no fingerprint sensor – the Touch ID scanner and the classic iPhone look of old seems to have been retired with the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.
Inside, the phones are similar too, carrying a new A12 Bionic chip from Apple that the company is promising will offer substantial performance improvements over last year's models: a CPU that runs up to 15 percent faster and a GPU that runs up to 50 percent faster, leading to apps that launch around 30 percent faster overall.
The cameras get a spec bump too, with new sensors capable of capturing more light in a quicker time. While the rear 12MP+12MP cameras on the XS and XS Max match the megapixel ratings of the iPhone X, Apple says the upgraded A12 chip will improve image processing and lead to even better snaps in a variety of conditions.
For bokeh shots (with a blurred background), the new camera and chipset combination means you can now adjust the depth of field (the blurriness of the background) after photos have been taken.
The iPhone XR sticks with a single-lens 12MP camera, but Apple says this will more than hold its own – and you'll be able to do the same depth of field adjustments after taking your shots as you can on the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.
Apart from the updated internal specs, nothing too dramatic has changed when you compare these phones with iPhone X we saw launched in 2017. You'll have to wait until 2019 for a more dramatic retooling of the Apple iPhone (remember the iPhone X was quite a significant shift in design).
There is, however, finally full IP68 waterproofing and dustproofing on the iPhone XS and XS Max, the first time we've seen it on Apple's handsets. The phones can survive 30 minutes submerged in up to 2 meters (6.6 ft) of whatever liquid you drop it into. The iPhone XR sticks with IP67.
Apple highlighted battery life too, saying the new iPhone XS will last 30 minutes longer than the iPhone X, and the iPhone XS Max will last 90 minutes longer than the iPhone X. The iPhone XR, meanwhile, will last an hour and a half longer between charges than the iPhone 8 Plus did.
Pricing depends on model and the amount of on-board storage you want. The iPhone XR, which you can get in white, black, blue, coral, yellow and red, comes with 64 GB, 128 GB or 256 GB of internal storage. Pricing starts at US$749, with pre-orders open on October 19 and shipping on October 26.
The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max can be yours in gold, silver and space gray, with storage options of 64 GB, 256 GB or 512 GB. Pricing on the XS model starts at $999, with the XS Max another $100 higher at $1,099. For both these phones, pre-orders open on Friday September 14 with shipping on Friday September 21.
Product page: Apple