Apple has launched its new iPhone, the iPhone Xs.
The iPhone Xs – pronounced “10-ess” – is made of surgical-grade steel and the most durable glass ever used in a smartphone.
Apple said the new phone will be available in gold, silver, and space grey colours.
New additions to the iPhone Xs include an upgraded IP68 resistance rating and a 5.8-inch OLED Super Retina display – the highest quality screen ever on an iOS device.
Apple also unveiled the iPhone Xs Max, a new smartphone with similar features to the device it was launched alongside – but with a 6.5-inch OLED Super Retina display.
Both displays are 120Hz, have HDR support, and feature extremely-high contrast ratios.
Apple further announced that sound on the phones has been improved, with upgraded stereo speakers.
Face ID and A12 Bionic
The iPhone Xs and Xs Max also support Face ID unlock, a feature introduced with the iPhone X.
Apple said the security feature will work even better on the new devices, making it faster and more secure.
Powering the smartphones is Apple’s A12 Bionic 7nm chip, which features powerful CPUs and GPUs – with up to 50% more graphics processing power.
Apple has also packed a Neural Engine into the devices, which improves the performance of the phones.
The combination of the elements in the A12 Bionic chip make it the most powerful chip in an iPhone to date, said Apple.
Another new feature in the phone includes an internal storage option of 512GB.
Apple further punted the augmented reality features of the iPhone Xs and Xs Max, which allow users to activate scenes like virtual aquariums in any room they are in.
Gaming on the new smartphones was shown off by game developers, too, with Bethesda’s The Elder Scrolls: Blades running on the device.
New cameras have been added to the Xs and Xs Max.
The new dual-camera system on the rear features a 12MP wide camera and a 12MP telephoto camera, along with a new True Tone flash.
On the front, a 7MP unit has been incorporated into the device.
These new sensors work with the A12 Bionic chip to provide optical image stabilisation, auto focus, auto white balance, face detection, facial landmarking, and noise reduction.
Apple said the cameras also support Smart HDR, which allows for image merging that combines multiple photos of a moving subject to create a “perfect” image.
Another new feature in the Photos app for the new iPhones is a depth slider, which lets users adjust the sharpness of the background of an image – using a slider mechanism – after the photo has been taken. Apple said this is a first in smartphone photography.
Battery, LTE, and dual SIM
Apple further punted the improved battery, networking, and SIM capabilities of the new iPhones.
Dual-SIM Dual-Standby functionality has been included in the new iPhones, thanks to eSIM technology. This lets users have two different phone numbers on a single phone.
This means the Xs and Xs Max will have one physical SIM and one eSIM. In China, where Apple eSIM is not yet supported, there will be a special physical-dual-SIM version.
Gigabit LTE has also been incorporated in the devices, along with improved battery life.
The iPhone Xs features 30 minutes more battery life than the iPhone X, while the iPhone Xs Max features 1 hour and 30 minutes more battery life than the iPhone X.
Pricing and South African launch date
The iPhone Xs and Xs Max will be available in 64GB, 256GB, and 512GB models.
The iPhone Xs will start at $999.
- iPhone Xs 64GB – $999
- iPhone Xs 256GB – $1,149
- iPhone Xs 512GB – $1,349
The Xs Max will start at $1,099.
- iPhone Xs Max 64GB – $1,099
- iPhone Xs Max 256GB – $1,249
- iPhone Xs Max 512GB – $1,449
Pre-orders for the phone will open on Friday, with shipping starting on 21 September.
For South Africans, Apple said the new iPhones will launch in the country from 28 September.
|Specifications||iPhone Xs||iPhone Xs Max|
|OS||iOS 12||iOS 12|
|Display||5.8-inch OLED (2,436 x 1,125)||6.5-inch OLED (2,688 x 1,242)|
|Processor||A12 Bionic||A12 Bionic|
|Rear camera||Dual 12MP f/1.8 + f/2.4||Dual 12MP f/1.8 + f/2.4|
|Front camera||7MP f/2.2||7MP f/2.2|
|Connectivity||802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC||802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC|
|Network||Gigabit 4×4 MIMO LTE||Gigabit 4×4 MIMO LTE|
|Biometrics||Face ID||Face ID|
|Dimensions||143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm / 177g||157.5 x 77.4 x 7.7 mm / 208g|