Apple touts its largest screens, cheaper models in iPhone revamp

Joshua Bennett
September 13, 2018

Apple has announced the third phone in its new line-up: the iPhone XR.

Apple just unveiled the iPhone XR at the Steve Jobs Theater, Cupertino, along with the iPhone XS and XS Max.

The iPhone XR is the successor to the iPhone 8, with prices starting at $749 in the US.

"The iPhone Xr is a 6.1" version of the iPhone X, but it uses an LCD screen instead of OLED, and only has a single camera instead of the dual camera found on the Xs.

Yet while the iPhone updates were significant, another less heralded device, the Apple Watch, stole the show. While the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are certainly the flagship products, the iPhone XR offers a similar user experience with some scaled-down specs.

The new XR will come in six colours, and three sizes: 64, 128, and 256 GB. Pre-orders start on October and it'll ship on October 26th.

Read on to find out everything we know about the brand new iPhone XR. The price of the XR will start at $749 in the U.S. and €849 ($987) in Germany.

The flying elephant of the new lot is the iPhone Xs Max, which sounds like it could be a new flavor of Mountain Dew, or perhaps an extreme sport. What it lacks in dual-camera-ness it makes up for with computational photography: the iPhone XR can - like the Google Pixel line - do Portrait Mode using its single camera thanks to improvements to the image signal processor, neural engine, and algorithms.

The biggest revelation however concerns Apple's new cheaper model the iPhone XR.

Both feature Apple's Face ID facial recognition technology, which Schiller said was the "most secure facial authentication ever in a smartphone", and a redesigned rear-facing camera set up, consisting of a 12MP wide-angle lens and a 12MP telephoto camera.

The phone has the same TrueDepth Face ID camera (and notch) on the front as the iPhone XS.

What's actually the most interesting in terms of the health monitoring capabilities of the new watch is that it actually includes for the first time ever a ECG (electrocardiogram) functionality in an over the counter consumer device. It's a "6-core CPU", with two performance cores and four for efficiency.

Barely a year ago, Apple released its most expensive phone to date, the iPhone X. The pricing triggered criticism in some quarters. The GPU is up to 50% faster than the GPU in the A11 Bionic processor in the iPhone X. The A12 Bionic chip can handle up to 5 trillion operations per second, compared to the 600 billion for the iPhone X. The Smart HDR is the most hyped feature that takes multiple shots in different exposures and combines them to get the bets shot.

Does it still have wireless charging?

It also allows for an iPhone first: a 512GB memory disk. However, it's early to give a verdict on it but our hunch is that Apple might just have a victor on its hands with the iPhone XR.

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