The iPhone XS is an impressive fusion of power, form and features. With an intensely powerful processor, high-tech cameras, and impressive sound quality, it ticks every box for a modern flagship smartphone. But is it worth your money?
In 2017, Apple released its flagship handset, the iPhone X. It was sleek, stylish and a huge departure from every other iPhone before it. It boasted crystal clear OLED display, bezel reduction, and secure face recognition technology. The iPhone X surpassed expectations, and left fans wondering where the company would go next.
Well, the answer is the iPhone XS, and in typical Apple fashion, it’s quite something to behold…
The iPhone XS has a similar design to the iPhone X - if not identical. That said, there are more colours to choose from this time around, including an elegant gold finish, silver, space grey and a smooth, stainless steel band.
It also comes in a larger, 6.5in model - the iPhone XS Max, which will is perfect for anyone partial to a big screen.
Specs and features
Unsurprisingly, the iPhone XS has some big improvements on performance and battery from earlier models, thanks mainly to Apple’s new A12 Bionic chip.
This chip has a 4-core GPU, a 6-core CPU and a neural design that allows the iPhone to perform 5 trillion operations per second. Now, for those less versed in the language of ‘tech jargon,’ this means the iPhone XS is a LOT faster, and a LOT more powerful than any other Apple phone before it.
The iPhone XS’s 5.8in OLED display offers super-sharp displays, with ultra-high pixel density that support Dolby Vision and HDR10, making for a super clear picture, and stunning colour.
Here’s where the iPhone XS really shines. The XS sticks to a dual camera in the back, with a new, super-powerful 7MP sensor on the front.
This 12MP wide-angle camera has a larger sensor with bigger, deeper pixels, which make for top-level pictures fit for a professional photographer.
Another cool feature of the XS’s camera, is facial landmarking. This lets you reduce red-eye, and adjust the shades of an image, ensuring you’ll always look snazzy in a selfie - and, y’know, get some moody lookin’ black and whites of forests.
Oh, and you can even adjust the clarity of the background of an image, after a picture has been taken AND record videos in 4K. Pretty impressive stuff.
Good news for music lovers; the XS boasts wider stereo sound, along with four built-in mics with super-duper sound quality. This will let you record gigs, and listen back in premium sound quality, not to mention enhance your games and movies experience to whole new level.
Thanks to Apple’s sturdy new chip, the new XS can provide a whopping 512GB worth of storage, enough for two hundred thousand photos!
That said, if 512GB is a little too much room for you, there's also 128GB and 64GB versions of the SX available.
Apple has improved its FaceID facial recognition technology on the XS. The True Depth Camera system will let you unlock the phone and check notifications without touching the screen, use Apple Pay, and access secure apps. Yup, we’re impressed!
On the downside, it's dropped fingerprint recognition, so if you prefer a tap to a stare, you're out of luck.
Apples new dual feature is called “Dual SIM Dual Stand By” and uses Apple’s eSim support to cater for a second SIM card. This will let you keep your UK number should you move abroad for a time, and allow you to switch seamlessly between a work and business phone.
The iPhone XS battery offers 30 minutes more juice than the iPhone X, which, considering all of the new specs and features, is pretty decent. That said, if you’re looking for a longer battery life, you’re better off checking out the iPhone XS Max, which gives you 90 minutes longer than the XS.
iPhone XS will be available to pre-order on 14 September, with shipments starting on 21 September.
Unsurprisingly, the Apple iPhone XS isn’t cheap - Apple doesn’t do low-cost handsets. It’ll set you back £999 for a 64 GB version of the handset, £1,149 for a 256 GB version and £1,349 for the 512 GB . Like I say, Apple doesn't do cheap!
If you'd like similar specs at a lower price, the iPhone XR might be more suited instead.
What's the cheapest iPhone XS deal?
Although the new Apple iPhone XS is expensive, there are ways you can manage the cost and avoid paying out heaps of money in one go.
Firstly, make sure you compare - offers change regularly, and it's always worth checking to see which mobile operator has the best deal right now.
You may find that smaller companies like giffgaff have better deals, so make sure you don't just look at the big networks.
It's also worth checking out mobile resellers rather than going through a network directly. They typically sell the same plans on those operators, but at a more competitive price.
Which networks sell the iPhone XS?
Here are a few places to start looking for the best XS deals:
Vodafone - seeing as Vodafone are the second largest mobile network on the planet, it would be fair to say it is pretty good at finding mobile plans. They offer an array of pay monthly plans, SIM-Only offers, and 'Red' 4G plans.
EE - Although EE is synonymous with superfast, 4G mobile internet, they’re also a dab-hand at providing cheap mobile offers, too. Whether you’re looking for a phone contract, SIM-Only or even a mobile broadband deal, EE have a huge selection of deals to offer.
O2 - With O2, you’ll find heaps of special offers if you’re an existing customer, and a wide selection of plans available.
Three - Whether you’re after a phone contract, SIM-only plan or unlimited data plans, you’ll be spoilt for choice with Three.
Alternatively, you could trade in your current iPhone and put the money towards a brand-new iPhone XS via a mobile recycling comparison site like CompareMyMobile or SellMyMobile. You can get as much as £600 depending on what model you have, and what shape it’s in.