Should I Buy an iPhone XS or an iPhone XR?

Even though the iPhone XS and iPhone XR are older generation models, if you can’t afford Apple’s newest smartphones, you may have to choose between these because they are less expensive. The two are initially difficult to distinguish, but there are a few significant differences you should take into account, and we’ll list them here.

Here, we examine the reasons for the significant price disparity between the two phones and assist you in deciding which to purchase. 

Price and Availability 

The iPhone XS is no longer a part of the Apple smartphone lineup following the release of the iPhone 11. Previously, the 64GB model was priced at £999/$999. Check our iPhone XS deals.

However, the iPhone XR is still on sale and can now be purchased for $170. See our collection of the top iPhone XR discounts.


At first glance, the only difference between the iPhone XS and iPhone XR is the XR’s vibrant colors. But upon closer inspection, they differ significantly.

The now-discontinued iPhone X has the exact dimensions as the iPhone XS. Despite having a 5.8-inch display, many people can still use this phone with just one hand because of the edge-to-edge notch design.

The iPhone XR has a 6.1-inch display and is larger despite being less expensive. It also has larger bezels. The iPhone XS is only available in silver, space gray, or gold, whereas the XR is available in six vivid colors.

In contrast to the cheaper iPhone XR, which has an aluminum rim similar to the one on the iPhone 7 or 8, the more expensive iPhone XS has a stainless-steel rim between the glass sandwich of its screen and rear.

The iPhone XR does not have the dual cameras of the iPhone XS. Instead, there is a single camera on the back—less of a bump, but still a bump. The iPhone XR is 8.3mm thick, thicker than the 7.7mm iPhone XS.

The differences in the appearance of the iPhone XS and iPhone XR are primarily in the screen size, rim material, color options, and bezel size.

Features and Specifications 

The fact that the iPhone XS and XR share the same A12 Bionic processor is something Apple has highlighted extensively. This is advantageous if you want to buy a phone for less money. The iPhone XR will function flawlessly because it has the same silicon inside and can be purchased at a lower price.

Screen technology is a significant difference. When compared side by side with the iPhone XR, which has an LCD, the OLED display on the iPhones XS is more vibrant.

In comparison to LCDs, OLEDs appear less grainy when viewed closely because they can produce deeper blacks and have more pixels per inch. The display on iPhone XR has a good display, as Apple’s LCDs are great. 

The iPhone XR now only has 128GB of storage due to a price drop, whereas the iPhone XS can be purchased with a massive 512GB of storage. The majority of users are satisfied with the 64GB base storage option.

Both phones lack a headphone jack, support wireless charging, and don’t include a fast charger when they are first purchased. Both phones lack Apple’s headphone jack adapter. Although both phones come with wired EarPods with Lightning connectors, you’ll need to purchase one if you want to use your standard wired headphones.

Each phone has a very different camera. The iPhone XS has superior dual 12MP sensors with optical image stabilization on both. One of the lenses is telephoto and has a 2x zoom capability and depth sensing. 

But thanks to Apple’s post-processing software advancements, the iPhone XR’s single camera can take portrait mode and bokeh effect photos. You can also take pretty good photos on the XR, though the camera could be more sophisticated than on the XS.

The True Depth front-facing camera array for Face ID and Animoji is on both phones.

Due to its larger battery and more energy-efficient LCD screen, the iPhone XR has a longer battery life than the iPhone XS.

Software and Apps

Currently, iOS 12, released at the same time as the iPhone XS and XR, comes preinstalled on both iPhone XS and XR models. This was a respectable update from iOS 11, significantly improving notification interaction and bringing group FaceTime to the platform.

The addition of Memoji to Animoji enables you to create a live reactive emoji of yourself that you can send to contacts via iMessage. Due to the True Depth cameras being located on the front of these phones, only those who own an iPhone X, XS, XS Max, or XR can use it.

Additionally, iOS 12 adds battery health information to the settings so you can see how much you’re using it. Between the two phones, there are no software distinctions. You can, however, update to iOS 13 now.

Final Thoughts 

If you can’t afford Apple’s newest smartphones, you may have to choose between the iPhone XS and iPhone XR because they are less expensive as they are older generation models. The two are initially hard to tell apart, but a few key distinctions were mentioned in this article. This article helped you to choose the right phone based on your preferences and tastes.  


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