At this point in the regular cycle of iPhone releases, there’s very little point in talking specs. In summary it’s simple – iPhone XS/Max is faster and better than the X, no surprises there. The addition of a new Max line (why did they call it that) with a whopping 6.5″ display is compelling; and probably marks the end of the road for the iPad mini. However, apart from that model there’s nothing really to note with the new lineup up.
The fundamental issue for me (yet again) is price. As a life time Apple fan and power user – I’m yet again priced out of the market for a flagship phone. Take the XS Max for example. I can see that fitting perfectly into my workflow. With such a big display I could justify it on the grounds that I’d use it to replace my iPad. A key task for me, for example is my weekly podcast production on my iPad Pro (12.9″). It would be possible now with a big 6.5″ iPhone to actually do the show, relatively comfortably on an iPhone. That’s genuinely a breakthrough for me.
However, if I was to do that – it would mean forking out a minimum of £1249 for the 256GB model. That is simply unaffordable. An alternative could be the 6.1″ displayed iPhone XR priced at a more reasonable £799 for the 128GB model. On paper it’s interesting. A big display and the same processor as it’s expensive XS cousin. However, the other specs make it too much of a comprise. I was shocked it doesn’t even feature 3D Touch (which I use all the time) plus the screen resolution is a measly 326PPI – that’s worse than my iPhone 7 Plus at 401PPI. (See the excellent table below from 9to5mac.com
So for the first time, the genuine question I have is what next? Do I finally abandon the iPhone and go all in on the OnePlus line? This is, without a doubt, my favourite Android hardware. If I’m honest, doing so would be a compromise. I’d miss Apple messages and the overall superior quality of iOS apps verses Android. But the jury is out for now. I still maintain that iOS offers a better experience than android.
The tragic irony is that most users who can afford flagship iPhones these days tend to buy them as fashion accessories – power users like me are now beginning to feel abandoned by Apple.