iPhone XS Max and iPhone Xs vs iPhone X - Is Apple Even Trying?

01 October 2018 | MJ Mendoza

This year, the world witnessed yet again, another grand launch from Apple. Like clockwork, the California-based tech company has launched three new iPhone models: the iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max, and iPhone XR. Both the iPhone Xs and Xs Max has is now available in most electronic stores today excluding the iPhone XR which is due October this year.

The iPhone XS and XS Max are said to be “future-proof” and are bringing out “new” technology to consumers. However, as with most iPhone releases, many are disappointed on how it turned out. People are calling out Apple for releasing the same phone with minor changes then calling it “future-proof” or “cutting-edge”. Is Apple even trying to come up with a real phone?

The iPhone XS Max, iPhone XS, and iPhone X Spec Comparison

Before you say “iPhone sucks”, here’s a spec sheet of two of their latest iPhone models compared to the iPhone X.

Specs

iPhone XS Max

iPhone XS

iPhone X

Price

$1099 (P74,729 at Personal Digital)

$999 (P68,075 at Personal Digital)

$930 (P57,051 at Personal Digital)

Release Date

September 2018

September 2018

September 2017

Dimensions

157.5 x 77.4 x 7.7 mm

143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm

143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm

Weight

208 g

177 g

174 g

Screen Type

Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors

Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors

Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors

Screen Size

6.5 inches

5.8 inches

5.8 inches

Screen-to-body ratio

~84.4% screen-to-body ratio

~82.9% screen-to-body ratio

~82.9% screen-to-body ratio

Resolution

1242 x 2688 pixels

1125 x 2436 pixels

1125 x 2436 pixels

Pixel Density

~458 ppi density

~458 ppi density

~458 ppi density

Screen Protection

Scratch-resistant glass, oleophobic coating

Scratch-resistant glass, oleophobic coating

Scratch-resistant glass, oleophobic coating

OS

iOS 12

iOS 12

iOS 11.1.1, upgradable to iOS 12

Chipset

Apple A12 Bionic

Apple A12 Bionic

Apple A11 Bionic

CPU

Hexa-core (2x Vortex + 4x Tempest)

Hexa-core (2x Vortex + 4x Tempest)

Hexa-core 2.39 GHz (2x Monsoon + 4x Mistral)

GPU

Apple GPU (4-core graphics)

Apple GPU (4-core graphics)

Apple GPU (three-core graphics)

Internal memory

64/256/512 GB, 4 GB RAM

64/256/512 GB, 4 GB RAM

64/256 GB, 3 GB RAM

External memory

No

No

No

Primary Camera

12MP+12MP

12MP+12MP

12MP+12MP

Secondary Camera

7MP

7MP

7MP

Camera Features

Quad-LED dual-tone flash, HDR (photo/panorama)

Quad-LED dual-tone flash, HDR (photo/panorama)

Quad-LED dual-tone flash, HDR (photo/panorama), panorama, HDR

Battery

Non-removable Li-Ion 3174 mAh battery

Non-removable Li-Ion 2658 mAh battery (10.13 Wh)

Non-removable Li-Ion 2716 mAh battery (10.35 Wh)

Connectivity

WLAN, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC

WLAN, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC

WLAN, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC

USB

2.0, proprietary reversible connector

2.0, proprietary reversible connector

2.0, proprietary reversible connector

Sensors

Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

Colors Available

Space Gray, Silver, Gold

Space Gray, Silver, Gold

Space Gray, Silver

Other Features

- IP68 dust/water resistant (up to 2m for 30 mins)

- Apple Pay (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX certified)

- Fast battery charging: 50% in 30 min

- Qi wireless charging

- Siri natural language commands and dictation

- iCloud cloud service

- MP3/WAV/AAX+/AIFF/Apple Lossless player

- MP4/H.265 player

- Audio/video/photo editor

- Document editor

- IP68 dust/water resistant (up to 2m for 30 mins)

- Apple Pay (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX certified)

- Fast battery charging: 50% in 30 min

- Qi wireless charging

- Siri natural language commands and dictation

- iCloud cloud service

- MP3/WAV/AAX+/AIFF/Apple Lossless player

- MP4/H.265 player

- Audio/video/photo editor

- Document editor

- IP67 dust/water resistant (up to 1m for 30 mins)

- Apple Pay (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX certified)

- Fast battery charging: 50% in 30 min

- Qi wireless charging

- Siri natural language commands and dictation

- iCloud cloud service

- MP3/WAV/AAX+/AIFF/Apple Lossless player

- MP4/H.265 player

- Audio/video/photo editor

- Document editor

The iPhone XS Max do share similarities with its smaller sibling - the iPhone Xs, however, it doesn’t get rid of the fact that the Xs is almost the same as last year’s iPhone X. All three models use the same screen albeit the iPhone XS Max is simply bigger. They share the same pixel density, almost similar screen-to-body ratio, and screen protection. Another similarity that all three units have is the camera. All three have the same amount of megapixels with no improvement from the previous model in terms of sensors. Many reviewers did make a note on how the iPhone Xs Max and Xs perform in low-light conditions but nothing really crazy or innovative in this department. You can also see the same sensors, USB, connectivity, etc.

Between the iPhone Xs and the iPhone XS Max, there are some differences. The most obvious one is, of course, the screen. The iPhone Xs Max has a phablet-like screen with 6.5 inches in contrast to the 5.8 inches of the Xs Max. Furthermore, it also has a longer battery life. Between the two, they share a lot of common ground such as the chipset, camera, dual-sim, sensors, etc. They run on the same Apple A12 Bionic chipset which is a step up from the Apple A11 Bionic chipset of the iPhone X. Thanks to that, the iPhone Xs Max and Xs also have similar processor speed which is one of the fastest yet (even when benchmarked with the Note 9) and internal memory which is a clear step up from the iPhone X.

Between the iPhone Xs and the iPhone X, on the other hand, there are also quite a few things that Apple has kept and improved on. First thing is the screen size. The iPhone Xs and X are virtually almost the same iPhone. Both have a 5.8-inch screen with 1125 x 2436 pixels and ~458 ppi density; they even have the same screen-to-body ratio! The only thing different between the two is the clear improvement on processors, GPU, and RAM which is thanks to the new Apple chipset. Despite the lack of improvement in camera sensors, there is also a clear improvement in camera software. Instead of an upgrade, there is a downgrade in battery capacity from 2716 mAh to 2658 mAh.

Is it Worth the Hype?

Unless you have an older iPhone (older than a 6s or a 6s Plus), then it is worth the upgrade. If you are looking for a powerful phone and willing to pay for it, the iPhone Xs and Xs Max are well worth it. However, you can still wait a bit longer for the iPhone XR to come out this October. This model is said to be cheaper but with all the good stuff that’s on the iPhone Xs and Xs Max. If you already have an iPhone X, it wouldn’t be a good idea to upgrade.

To be honest, almost $1000 for a smartphone is too much. There are a lot of phone brands out there that produce almost the same specs (some even better features) with less than half the price.

For this price, what do you want to buy instead of an iPhone Xs or Xs Max? Let us know your thoughts on the comments section!

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