If you’ve been following the any of the rumours involving the release of the all-new iPhone, you would’ve no doubt been awaiting the launch of the latest line-up of smartphones from Apple dropping today. Two weeks ago, the company confirmed its big event, requesting tech journos and guests to gather round. It would come as no surprise, then, that Apple today, 12 September 2018, released the new iPhones, the iPhone XS and XS Max, as well as a more affordable unit, the iPhone Xr, alongside the Series 4 Watch.
The new devices follow a similar design philosophy from last year’s iPhone X, which features a stainless steel frame, glass front and rear panels, as well as the same dual-lens camera bump on the rear. It also keeps its water and dust resistance, and the team have not brought the headphone jack back. One of the new features of the two flagship iPhones is that they’re the first from the company to feature dual SIM capabilities. There are two variants to this, however. China will receive the Dual SIM, which supports two physical SIMs, while the rest of the world will include one physical SIM, and Apple’s internally developed, eSIM.
As the leaks suggested, the Xs Max has a 6.5″ screen, with the Xs a 5.8″ and Xr a 6.1″. The resolutions, however, differ across the smartphones. These are 1242x2688px, 1125x2436px, 828x1792px, respectively. The first two feature an Super AMOLED panel, with the Xr featuring an LED-backlit IPS LCD. The two flagships also feature HDR, Dolby Vision and HDR 10, with a 120Hz refresh rate. While the company didn’t release any specifics, they claim the Face ID has also been improved with additional speed. All of the smartphones feature Apple’s updated A12 Bionic Hexa-core CPUs (x2 performance cores + x4 efficiency cores). GPU graphics is up by 50% over the iPhone X, with the built-in neural engine able to run up to 5 trillion operations per second. While the Samsung smartphones may not have added much in the way of improved CPU performances over last year’s models, Apple has thrown the sink at it, on paper at least. Most of the performance gains are observed in the form of camera capabilities such as AR and Animoji. While the dual-lens camera still feature a 12MP lenses, the wide-angle camera angle sees an upgrade of its sensor. For each image captured, Apple claims that its CPU carries out 1 trillion operations.
The Xs Max now features a non-removable Li-Ion 3300mAh battery while the Xs has a 2716mAh battery. This isn’t a significant change of the iPhone X, Apple claims its able to eke out an additional 30 minutes of battery life. As leaked earlier today, the Xs units will be available in 64/256/512GB capacities, with 4GB RAM, while the Xr will include 64/128/256GB and 3GB RAM, all running on iOS 12. In terms of colour options, the Xr will be available in black, white, red, yellow, coral and blue, while the Xs Max and Xs an additional gold option, similar to the newly launched Watch Series 4.
Pricing for the iPhone Xs will start at $999 for the 64GB version, with the Xs Max starting at $1,099 for the 64GB version. The iPhone Xr will start at $749, some $250 cheaper. Pre-orders for the units will start on 14 September and will be shipping from 21 September.
Alongside the new smartphones, Apple has also launched their Series 4 Watch. The new series Watch features 35% and 32% larger screens, with thinner bodies than previous models. The default watch face sports as many as eight complications, with interactions with the edges of the screen. The updated features also includes haptic feedback, 50% louder speaker, and ceramic casing. Apple claims that the new 64-bit, Dual-Core S4 chip will be twice as fast as last year’s unit, and a next-gen accelerometer system for more accurate tracking, which is able to detect when you fall. Battery life remains the same at 18 hours, although there is a little upgrade for a 6-hour outdoor workout. Pre-orders also start on 14 September, with pricing starting at $399 for GPS models, $499 for LTE model.
Apple South Africa have already announced their iCare Plus trade-in option for South Africa.
FREE iCare Plus – Exclusive to iStore, when customers upgrade to the new iPhone Xs and Xs Max they can now get a 2-year extended warranty and a certified screen repair, normally selling for R1999, for FREE. To qualify, customers should secure a voucher online now at www.myistore.co.za, and subsequently redeem it when they upgrade their contract or purchase any new iPhone at iStore (iPhone 8 and higher) between now and 31 December 2018.