Apple has announced the trio of new iPhones on Wednesday and I have been asked by several readers and close friends: "Which iPhone will I get?" Or "Is the iPhone XS really valued at $ 250 more than the iPhone XR? "
After some deliberation, I decided that the iPhone XR is the most reasonable answer. Let me explain.
If we look at Apple's device comparison site, it is clear that these two devices are almost identical. The iPhone XR and iPhone XS use the same processor, the A12 Bionic, have the same Neural Engine and use Face ID to unlock the phone and make purchases.
The XR has a water resistance rating of IP67, with an IP68 rating for the iPhone XS. That translates into a difference of survival that is submerged at a depth of 1 meter for the XR versus 2 meters for the XS.
Leaving aside the most striking difference in available colors, with six options for the iPhone XR and only three for the iPhone XS, the display is the most striking difference between the two phones.
The iPhone XS has an OLED screen of 5.8 inches and the iPhone XR has an LCD screen of 6.1 inches. On paper and objectively, the iPhone XS has a better screen than the iPhone XR.
The differences between OLED and LCD screens are rather technical, but it actually comes down to OLED screens with better overall colors, deeper black and energy efficiency.
IPhones have been using LCD screens for years. In fact, the iPhone X used only an OLED screen prior to this year's iPhone line-up. So, if you have a variant of the iPhone 8, iPhone 7, iPhone 6, etc., you are currently using a telephone with an LCD screen.
In other words, upgrading to the iPhone XR from an iPhone 8 Plus will not be a simple downgrade when it comes to display quality. The iPhone XR has a lower overall screen resolution than the iPhone 8 Plus at 1920 x 1080 compared to 1792 x 828 respectively. And if you compare the two screens side by side, you may see a slight difference, but I do not see it as enough to To be a deal breaker.
The arrangement of the reversing camera is another area where the two devices diverge. The iPhone XS uses the two cameras from Apple to take photos in portrait mode with adjustable bokeh or blur.
Both devices have the same wide-angle camera setting, with an aperture of f / 1.9, optical image stabilization, real tone and can make smart HDR photos.
Even though the iPhone XR has a single camera, still pictures in portrait mode can still be captured and thanks to the software, users can still adjust the amount of bokeh after the picture is taken, just like the iPhone XS.
Apple is not the first company to offer a software function for a single lens camera to create a depth of field; Samsung and Google smartphones offer the same function.
There is no reason to think that Apple can not implement a software-based solution for Portrait mode that does not look as good as what the iPhone XS can achieve.
Also: Apple iOS 12: Cheat sheet TechRepublic
When you take the differences between the two devices and add that the iPhone XR starts at $ 749 while the iPhone XS starts at $ 999, it's hard for me to tell someone to buy the iPhone XS via the iPhone XR. There's just not enough difference – beyond the image quality that most people I've talked to can not care about – to guarantee that I have to pay almost $ 50 a month for the iPhone XS, compared to $ 37 for the iPhone XR.
If I was not a technical writer, but instead had a job for which I did not have to go through the latest and best technical developments, I would no doubt purchase the iPhone XR when it is introduced next month.
From a financial point of view, the iPhone XR is the responsible choice. From the perspective of the daily user, this is easily the most reasonable choice.