The 5.8-inch iPhone Xs could be the next compact flagship to compete with, while the 6.5-inch iPhone Xs Max could turn out to be a true rival for large-screen Android flagships
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Apple has taken the covers off of its 2018 flagship iPhones, making the top-of-the-tier iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max the new kids on the block to compete with. The phones will inadvertently set the industry standard for flagship smartphones to come and possibly give birth to some trends A.K.A replicas. The 5.8-inch iPhone Xs could be the next compact flagship to compete with, while the 6.5-inch Xs Max could turn out to be a true rival for large-screen Android flagships like the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, or the upcoming Pixel 3 XL, or if we dare go cheaper, the upcoming OnePlus 6T. Because let’s face it, for the masses Android will always offer cheaper flagship alternatives with top ‘notch’ specs.
Only time and testing will reveal the true strength of the new iPhones, so without digressing further, here is what the iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max have to offer.
Let’s get the specs out of the way first. The iPhone Xs and Xs Max feature a powerful new A12 Bionic chipset with a dedicated Neural Processing Unit capable of performing 5 Trillion operations per second. The A12 Bionic chipset is based on the 7nm manufacturing process with 6.9 billion transistors, Six core CPU and Four Core GPU. Apple says the performance cores are 15 percent faster and consume 40 percent lesser power. The four efficiency cores are also said to consume 50 percent lesser power. The neural engine has an 8-core design with a smart compute system and Apple claims that the new SoC can perform real-time machine learning tasks. The A12 Bionic chipset also comes bearing support for ARKit 2, Apple’s second-generation Augmented Reality platform.
Under Apple’s new Giveback Programme, the main logic board on the iPhone Xs and Xs Max is made of recycled tin. Further boosting their build quality, the new iPhones are built with surgical steel and are IP68 water and dust resistant and can withstand being submerged 2 meters in water for up to 30 minutes. The iPhone Xs weighs 177 grams while the iPhone Xs Max weighs 208 grams.
The iPhone Xs and Xs Max come with Dolby Vision and HDR Support. The iPhone Xs features a 5.8-inch OLED Super Retina display with a notch and 2436x1125‑pixel resolution at 458 ppi, while the Xs Max sports the same OLED display in a 6.5-inch format with 2688x1242‑pixel resolution at 458 ppi. Apple says that the new displays can offer a million-to-one contrast ratio with greater brightness and deeper blacks, while exhibiting 60 percent greater dynamic range in HDR photos.
Both the iPhone Xs and Xs Max feature last year's True Depth camera system which rests within the notch of the phones. The only improvement is faster unlock times. Both phones feature a dual 12MP+12MP Wide Angle + Telephoto lenses at the back which promise better low-light photography. The aperture for the wide angle lens stands at f1.8, while the telephoto lens offers f2.4 aperture. The primary camera setup can record 4K videos up to 60 fps, 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps and 720p HD video recording at 30 fps. There's a 7MP front camera on the phones which hasn’t changed and the camera features f2.2 aperture. The primary cameras on the iPhone Xs and Xs Max can change the depth of field thanks to the new A12 chipset. This dynamic depth of field, which we have also seen in some Android smartphones, should result in improved Bokeh shots and Apple did show off some pretty impressive camera samples, that is if they can be taken at face value. The primary camera system features dual OIS and the Telephoto lens is capable of 2X optical zoom. The True-Tone flash has also been improved.
A new feature that Apple introduced with the iPhone Xs and the iPhone Xs Max is Smart HDR, which is similar to what we’ve seen on the Google Pixel 2 XL in the past. "Let's say you're taking a picture and the subject is moving," Apple claims that the new A12 Bionic chipset can allow for capturing four frames with zero shutter lag, and a long exposure for detailed shadow. Combining multiple photos taken in quick succession can result in better images.
The iPhone Xs touts a 30 minutes longer battery life than the iPhone X, while the iPhone Xs Max features “the largest iPhone battery ever” with 90 minutes longer usage time. Apple, however, did not let out the battery capacity for both the new iPhones at the time of writing this story. Apple claims the iPhone Xs can provide 20 hours of talktime, 12 hours of internet usage, 14 hours of video playback and 60 hours of audio playback. The phone can achieve 50 percent charge in just 30 minutes. The iPhone Xs Max, on the other hand, can provide up to 25 hours of talktime, 13 hours of internet usage, 15 hours of video playback, 65 hours of wireless audio playback and can also charge 50 percent in just 30 minutes.
The iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max come with Gigabit-class LTE for faster download speeds and Dual SIM-Dual Standby (DSDS) through the use of a nano-SIM and digital eSIM. In India, Airtel and Reliance Jio are said to offer the eSIM facility on the new iPhone Xs and Xs Max starting later this year. Only in China, Apple will offer the iPhone Xs and Xs max with normal dual SIM slots. There is a lightning connector at the bottom of the device and built-in stereo speakers at the top and bottom of the device. Both phones support Qi wireless charging and the box will include EarPods, a Lightning connector, Lightning to USB cable and a USB power adapter.
On the software front, the iPhone Xs and Xs Max will feature iOS 12 out of the box.
The iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max will be available in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB storage capacity. Both phones will be seen in Space Grey, Silver and a (pretty good looking) Gold finish. The iPhone Xs will start at $999 (Rs 71,833), while the bigger iPhone Xs Max will cost upwards of $1,099 (Rs 79,023). However, the Rupee value against the Dollar is fluctuating by the day so the top-of-the-line iPhone Xs Max could end up costing upwards of Rs 1 Lakh in India. The iPhone Xs India price starts at Rs 99,900, while the iPhone Xs Max India price starts at Rs 1,09,900. Apple-designed accessories including leather and silicone cases in a range of colours will be available starting at Rs 3,500, while the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max Leather Folio will be available for Rs 9,900.
Customers will be able to pre-order the iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max beginning Friday, September 14, with availability beginning Friday, September 21, in more than 30 countries and territories including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Japan, Jersey, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the UAE, UK, USand US Virgin Islands.
The second launch wave for the Phone Xs and iPhone Xs Max will see them launch in India, Andorra, Armenia, Bahrain, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, Iceland, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Monaco, Oman, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia and South Africa beginning Friday, September 28.
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