Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Cupertino, CA, United States (4E) – Apple, Inc has revealed the 2018 iterations of its fabled iPhone and these beasts are huge – and one of them is the most expensive iPhone yet.
The iPhone XS, Apple’s flagship smartphone for the year, comes in two versions — the 5.8 inch XS and the 6.5 inch XS Max. The latter boasts the biggest iPhone display ever and at $1,449 for the 512 GB version is the most expensive iPhone yet. This is the first time Apple has developed a phone with half a terabyte of storage.
The XS and XS Max will come with three storage options — 56 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB. The XS retails for $999 for the base 56 GB storage option. The XS Max takes pricing to the “next level” (meaning very expensive). Max starts at $1,099, which is Apple’s most expensive for an entry phone.
For more flash storage, there’s the 256GB iPhone Xs for $1,149; a 512GB iPhone Xs for $1,349, a 256GB iPhone Xs Max for $1,249 and the 512GB iPhone Xs Max for $1,449 (easily the most expensive iPhone ever).
The iPhone XS was championed as the “most advanced” iPhone to date by CEO Tim Cook. “We’re going to take iPhone X to the next level,” Cook said.
What do you get in exchange for all this wallet-breaking heftiness?
Both phones feature edge-to-edge displays and notches for the front-facing sensors and cameras. The ‘S’ in the name means the upgrades are mostly internal. More drastic design changes are expected in 2019.
Both phones are powered by Apple’s new A12 bionic chip capable of “5 trillion operations per second” and opening apps 30 percent faster than previous devices. The XS includes a “Smart HDR” camera feature, which takes photos with zero lag and combines multiple frames to create the best picture possible.
The XS is big on augmented reality. During the reveal, basketball icon Steve Nash came out to highlight “Home Court,” an AR app that tracks a user’s jump shots. More games, including classics like “Galaga,” will also hit Apple’s App Store later in the year.
The XSand XS Max will be more powerful than their predecessors and offer more configurations.
The XS features a 5.8-inch Super Retina OLED display at 2,436 x 1,125 resolution with 2.7 million pixels and 458 pixels per inch. Its display has 60% greater dynamic range than that of the X. The XS is also more dust- and water-proof than the X.
On the other hand, the XS Max features a 6.5-inch Super Retina OLED display at 2,688 x 1,242 resolution with 3.3 million pixels (but still 458 ppi).
Both XS models come with a wide range of improvements. Among these are wider stereo sound and better Face ID with faster algorithms and Secure Enclave. Apple has also introduced the industry’s first 7nm chip in the form of the A12 Bionic.
Apple says that its new chip has 6.9 billion transistors, a 4-core GPU, a 6-core CPU, and a neural engine with an 8-core design. The A12 can do 5 trillion operations per second compared to the A11 neural engine that could conduct 600 billion operations per second. Apple says the A12 will allow for “new experiences not possible before.”
Apple has also improved the camera system. The iPhone XS will ship with a 12-megapixel wide angle camera with an all new sensor (f/1.8); a 12-megapixel telephoto camera (f/2.4), and improved True Tone flash. There’s also the 7-megapixel front-facing camera (f/2.2) with a faster sensor than the iPhone X.
There are many software improvements such as a new feature called Smart HDR that adjusts the light in the shot automatically, even if you’re taking a photo while facing the sun. You can even change the depth of field after you’ve taken a photo. You can now record stereo sound on your videos on the
Apple says the iPhone XS’ battery life will last 30 minutes longer than the iPhone X, while the iPhone XS Max will last an hour and a half longer.
The iPhone XS and XS Max have dual SIM support. With two SIM cards, a user can keep two phone numbers; use two different plans and travel with a local plan abroad.
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