A Nerd’s Review: The iPhone XS

From the hyped-up keynote to the adrenaline filled pre-order evening, I finally got in my hands the all new iPhone XS Max. This year Apple introduced three new models to the iPhone X lineup, and two of those were the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. The only difference between the two is battery life and screen size. The iPhone XS Max is just about the same size as the iPhone 6 Plus, 7 Plus and 8 Plus—and so, it’s a familiar size for many plus owners. The only difference, it’s essentially all screen! This was what I wanted when the iPhone X was released this time last year. I wanted an all screen plus-sized iPhone, but instead, I settled for the smaller brother. At least, until now.

My first thought about this year’s announcements, was that there wasn’t much to cover. Until I wrote myself a list and realised (for an “S” year upgrade) there’s actually quite a number of improvements. Apart from the larger display on the iPhone XS Max, there’s also stronger glass (for all you clumsy phone owners), faster speeds with the new A12 Bionic chip, iP68 water/dust resistance, gigabit LTE, dual sim support, improved battery, huge updates to the camera and much more.

The camera is by far where the iPhone XS saw the most improvements. I took a trip to Lake Tekapo in the South Island of New Zealand and put the new camera through its paces. Not only was battery life on the phone impressive, but the shots and videos that came out were certainly a new standard (for what can be captured from something that goes in your pocket).

The updates to the iPhone 8 over the iPhone 7 weren’t huge, and I felt it didn’t justify a new title (but rather should’ve been the iPhone 7S). But, this is certainly for me one of the biggest updates in an “S” year. I’m looking forward to seeing what Apple brings to the table next, like the rumoured iPad Pro that mirrors the new standard of bezel-less design (even if technology hasn’t advanced enough to eliminate that pesky notch).

– Michael Topschij.