Apple announce iPhone Xs and iPhone XsMax

Apple have announced the latest iPhone known as the iPhone Xs. The screen goes top to bottom, edge to edge (still with a notch).

The new phone features a 5.8″ display. It features a 2436×1125 resolution with a 458ppi. 

There’s also a new iPhone XsMax (not XS) that features a 6.5″ Super Retina display featuring 120Hz with Dolby Vision and HDR10. 

The phone is now basically waterproof and Apple has even tested in beer. Apple says just rinse it off and let it dry. 

That notch is packed with sensors and will now enable even faster face unlocks. 

In terms of processor, Apple is now using a 7 nanometer, A12 Bionic. This combined a 4-core GPU and a 6-core CPU. An 8-core Neural engine now powers AI tasks on the phone.

With the new power, Apps can now launch up to 30% faster.

In terms of storage, you can now get 512GB of storage, up from the current 256GB max. 

Apple were keen to highlight their AR capabilities and improvements using the new A12 Bionic. ARKit 2 will improve opportunities for developers. 

CoreML will now run 9x faster while using just 1/10 of the power, that’s a significant advancement. Apple are now expanding the capabilities for developers enabling them take advantage of the on-device machine learning.

One of the better demos for the new iPhones was HomeCourt, an example of real-time player tracking on the basketball court, including the ability to do trajectory mapping to enabling players to improve. It’s like a coach in your pocket that recognises the world of basketball. This is powered by the new chips in the new iPhones. 

One of the Apple’s strengths, the camera is unsurprisingly also getting updates. Smart HDR for example uses a 4-frame buffer of photos as well as inter-frames shot at a different exposures and shadow details, then merges them together for 1 photo. 

Apple will now let you adjust the depth of field and bokeh effect on your photos, after you take them. This has been available elsewhere for years now, but it is great to see it coming to the iPhone.

Battery life

The iPhone Xs will get you around half an hour longer compared to the iPhone X and the XsMax will get around 1.5hrs longer.

eSims enable dual-sim

Apple are finally adding dual-sim capabilities to the iPhone for those with work and personal lives that you want ot keep separate. In most of the world this will arrive thanks to a eSim + physical SIM, while in China, there’s a special dual-sim model. 

As Apple needs a carrier to support eSim, they aren’t able to offer it everywhere, you’ll notice Telstra and Optus are not listed on the supported carriers list, so I hope Apple would ship the China model to Australia, or we’ll miss out on this feature. 

Apple didn’t end there, announcing a cheaper iPhone Xr. You can read all about that in a dedicated post here

Pricing and Availability

The new iPhones will be available for pre-order from Friday and go on sale from September 21st and Australia is included on the launch list.

They cost:

  • iPhone Xs – starts at US$999.00 and is available in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB.
  • iPhone XsMax – also available in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB and starts at US$1,099.00

Lets calculate what that means for Australian pricing (official pricing should be available shortly from The highest price, the 1531.40

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Jason Cartwright
Jason Cartwright
Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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