iPhone XS And iPhone XS Max Hands-On Review

The iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, and the recent Apple iPhone models flagships and top best phone list, although the previous iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are still available at a discount, and used iPhone XS can be found even at a much lower price. 

Cheat Sheet for iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max

  • The cameras are decent, and the new Portrait Depth Control works nicely.
  • Apple’s A12 Bionic processor is now quicker than any Android device.
  • Because of its bigger 6.5-inch screen and longer battery life, the iPhone XS Max is more appealing than the standard iPhone XS.
  • It’s a shame neither phone comes with USB-C fast charging out of the box.
  • If you possess an iPhone 7 or previous handset, the iPhone XS Max and iPhone XS are worth upgrading, although some may choose the cheaper iPhone XR or new iPhone 11.

Regular and Supersized Designs

If you are someone who used to carry the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus for over a year before upgrading to the 5.8-inch iPhone X, the iPhone XS Max feels comfortable in your hands and pocket. This is due to the iPhone XS Max being around the same size as the bigger iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone 8 Plus but sporting a larger 6.5-inch display.

The good news is that you get more screen real estate in the same size chassis as Apple’s Plus devices, without bezels and the Home button. The bad news is that this is not a skinny-jeans phone (no one should ever wear them), and you’ll need two hands to operate this 7.3-ounce behemoth comfortably. Because it is shorter and slimmer than the iPhone XS Max and weighs 6.24 ounces less, the 5.8-inch iPhone XS is better designed for one-handed operation.

Apple’s phones survived drops from pocket height, head height (6 feet), and while standing on a picnic table with one arm outstretched, according to YouTuber TechSmartt. SquareTrade, an extended warranty business, awarded the iPhone XS a high breakability score after dropping it from an exaggerated height of 6 feet.

Apple has increased the durability of the iPhone XS and XS Max by rating them IP68 for dust and water resistance. That means they can be immersed in 2 meters of water for up to 30 minutes, compared to 1 meter for the same length of time on the iP67-rated iPhone X and iPhone 8.


The iPhone XS Max’s OLED display is more extensive and bolder than anything Apple has ever placed in a phone. It is massive at 6.5 inches and supports split-view mode in various Apple apps, including Mail and Calendar. The phone has the appearance and feel of a desktop computer.

The Super Retina Displays on both iPhones XS and XS Max are blindingly bright, with the iPhone XS measuring 611 nits and the iPhone XS Max at 606 nits on the light meter. Their OLED displays are also vivid, spanning 123 percent of the sRGB color space. 

However, the colors on the iPhone XS and XS Max’s displays are more accurate, with a Delta-E rating of 0.25 and 0.22 for the XS and XS Max, respectively. A perfect score is zero. 


If there were one area where Apple could have improved the iPhone, it would be the camera. The iPhone XS and XS Max boost the ante with twin 12-MP cameras with more extensive and profound pixels that let in up to 50% more light without compromising clarity.

The iPhone XS has a new Smart HDR option, which Apple claims uses quicker sensors, an improved ISP, and advanced algorithms to provide more fantastic highlights and shadow details in photographs. 

Depth Control is available on the iPhone XS, allowing you to adjust the depth of field after you’ve shot. The camera of the iPhone XS is also excellent for close-ups.

The iPhone XS and XS Max’s 7-MP TrueDepth front cameras have enhanced bokeh settings and Smart HDR. The Stage Light effect darkens everything except your face and is still hit-or-miss. 


The A12 Bionic CPU is the first 7-nanometer semiconductor in a phone, but what it allows is more essential. According to Apple, the two high-performance cores in this 6-core processor are up to 15% quicker, while the 4-core GPU is up to 50% faster.

Before we get to the benchmark results, it’s worth noting that Face ID is faster on the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max than on the iPhone X. This is due to enhanced algorithms in iOS 12 and the faster A12 chip. It’s only a half-second difference, but it’s significant. 

The iPhone XS and XS Max also performed admirably in other real-world tasks, such as video editing. Apple’s phones converted a 2-minute 4K footage to 1080p in 39 seconds. 

What about launching apps? The iPhone XS took 20.8 seconds to launch Fortnight, 4.9 seconds to launch Pokémon Go, and 6.17 seconds to launch Asphalt 9. The previous iPhone X was likewise slower than the iPhone XS, with times of 26, 7.2, and 10 seconds for the applications.

Battery Life and Charging 

According to an iPhone XS and XS Max deconstruction, the iPhone XS has a 2,658 mAh battery, which is less than the 2,716 batteries in the iPhone X. According to regulatory filings, the iPhone XS Max has a greater capacity of 3,174 mAh.

If you want more battery life, purchase the iPhone XS Max. The iPhone XS Max lasted 10 hours 38 minutes in the Tom’s Guide Battery Test, which entails continuous web browsing over LTE at 150 nits of screen brightness. 

The iPhone XS has an average battery life of 9 hours and 41 minutes. That’s less than the iPhone X’s endurance, which lasted 10 hours and 49 minutes. 

Final Thoughts 

Many iPhone users will choose the less expensive iPhone models, which offer the same fantastic features found in the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. However, If you want a better OLED display, two back cameras, and less bezel, the iPhone XS Max, with its larger screen, is the way to go. Or you can find a used iPhone XS at a reasonable price on credible locations like Phone Daddy. 


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