APPLE iPhone Xs VS Xs Max Comparison

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In this article, I give you my Apple iPhone Xs VS Xs Max Comparison with specs included. This S in the name, which means incremental and small changes for the 5.8-inch iPhone Xs, which already existed last year with the introduction of the iPhone X.

I think that a lot of you probably are more interested in the Xs Max, for those who used to be iPhone Plus users for example, or for those of you who bounced back and forth between Android and the iPhone and like the phablet sizes.

The iPhone Xs Max display diagonal size is 6,5-inches. It’s not too much heavier though 208 grams versus 177 so the weight difference doesn’t feel humongous in your pocket.

If you have an iPhone X I probably wouldn’t go for the Xs unless you have that upgrade every year time playing with your carrier. If you’ve just been waiting for the bigger iPhone well you certainly should jump on it.

You know what the drill here is with iPhones. You got three different capacities, as you go up in each storage capacity that’s $100 more. So for the smaller iPhone the 5,8-inch model, the Xs, starts at $999 US dollars. For the Xs Max, it’s $100 more, it’s 1099 dollars.

The base model is 64 GB which in the old days might have seemed nice, that’s not gonna rock my world and excite me that much, it’s what most high-end smartphones have regardless of platform, Android as well.

Of course, there’s no expandable memory here, there’s no MicroSD card slot. But, things have changed a lot, where I used to want to have a higher storage capacity on my phones, but not so much anymore because a lot of media that I consume is streaming these days.

Probably the same for you too. You have music, videos, you’ve got Netflix, you’ve got Amazon video, you have Apple Music, you have Spotify, etc. So, I find I put less stuff on my phone, and mostly what is there are the photos and the videos that I actually take with it.

Your ‘mileage’ may vary, you know how you use the phone so you decide about the storage capacity. The highest capacity is 512 gigs, half a terabyte. Just like the Note 9, it’s a lot of money but it’s a heck of a lot of storage if you know that you need it.

The phones are once again glass front and back. Even though Apple says it’s tougher glass, an early drop test showed that it is actually a bit less breakable than the iPhone X which isn’t hard honestly. They are still glass, you’re still going to want a case.

And speaking of a case, I’ve been using Spigen Ultra Hybrid (Check on Amazon: *Paid Link) and their sheath cases which are so thin and light they’re even thinner than the Apple silicone case yet they offer a good deal of draw protection and obviously scratch protection. I’m using their last year’s model for the iPhone X which is a clear case and it’s holding up well too. It’s not stretched out, it doesn’t look terrible, it’s a good phone case.

One good thing, going back to our iPhones again, is that whether you get the smaller the larger model you get the same stuff inside. It used to be that you’ve got better cameras if you have got the bigger phone, you got more RAM, that sort of thing.

The comparison between the Apple iPhone XS and XS Max reveals several key similarities and differences, primarily revolving around size, performance, and features. Let’s delve into the details to understand how these two flagship devices stack up against each other.

First and foremost, it’s crucial to highlight that both the iPhone XS and XS Max share identical camera setups, RAM capacities, and processors. This means that regardless of whether you opt for the XS or XS Max, you’ll enjoy the same high-quality camera performance, multitasking capabilities, and processing power courtesy of the Apple A12 Bionic CPU.

However, where they differ significantly is in their physical dimensions. The XS Max boasts a larger display compared to its counterpart, resulting in a higher resolution and slightly lower pixel density due to the increased screen size. This translates to a more immersive viewing experience on the XS Max, making it ideal for users who prioritize screen real estate for multimedia consumption, gaming, or productivity tasks.

Additionally, the larger size of the XS Max allows for a bigger battery, akin to the iPhone Plus models of previous years. This larger battery capacity translates to longer battery life, providing users with extended usage times between charges. While the difference in battery life between the XS and XS Max may not be as pronounced as previous iterations, the XS Max still offers a noticeable improvement, delivering up to 45 minutes of additional screen-on time compared to the XS.

Both devices feature Apple’s Face ID technology for secure biometric authentication, eliminating the need for a fingerprint scanner. The TrueDepth camera system enables advanced facial recognition capabilities, ensuring fast and secure authentication even in low-light conditions. This represents a significant advantage over competing devices that may offer less reliable facial recognition or rely on less secure biometric methods.

In terms of design, the XS and XS Max share a similar aesthetic, with nearly identical dimensions and overall appearance. Existing iPhone X cases may even be compatible with both models, further highlighting their similarities. However, subtle differences, such as antenna lines and camera bump sizes, distinguish the XS Max from its smaller counterpart, albeit in minor ways that may not be immediately apparent to most users.

Another notable improvement with the XS and XS Max is their enhanced water resistance, boasting an IP68 rating compared to the IP67 rating of their predecessors. This means that both devices can withstand immersion in deeper water for longer periods, offering greater peace of mind for users concerned about accidental water damage.

One of the most visible changes with the new models is the introduction of a new gold color option, adding a touch of elegance to the lineup. This new color variant complements the existing color options, offering users more choices to suit their personal preferences and style.

Furthermore, it’s essential to underscore Apple’s commitment to user privacy, a key differentiator that sets its devices apart from competitors. Unlike other voice assistants that may store user data in the cloud for analysis and advertising purposes, Apple prioritizes user privacy by minimizing data collection and processing on its servers. This approach ensures that user queries and personal information remain secure and confidential, providing users with greater peace of mind in an era of growing privacy concerns.

Overall, the comparison between the iPhone XS and XS Max reveals a nuanced balance of similarities and differences, catering to a diverse range of user preferences and priorities. Whether you prioritize screen size, battery life, or design aesthetics, both models offer compelling features and performance enhancements that elevate the iPhone experience to new heights. Ultimately, the choice between the XS and XS Max comes down to individual preferences and needs, with both devices representing formidable options in the premium smartphone segment.

Safari is set to cease fingerprinting, marking a positive development in user privacy. This move addresses the intrusive practice of products tracking users across web pages, tailoring advertisements based on their browsing history. With Safari’s discontinuation of fingerprinting, users can expect a reduction in targeted advertising, contributing to a more privacy-conscious browsing experience.

Moreover, Apple’s utilization of its new neural engine, capable of processing five trillion operations per second, opens up possibilities for practical applications of artificial intelligence (AI) without compromising user privacy. By leveraging the neural processor, Apple aims to enhance various features, such as augmented reality (AR) functionalities and photography capabilities, while upholding stringent privacy standards.

For users interested in AR experiences, the iPhone XS and XS Max offer immersive features, including a measuring tool, powered by the neural engine. While AR technology is still in its nascent stage, these devices provide a glimpse into its potential utility, particularly for tasks requiring quick and approximate measurements.

The neural engine also plays a crucial role in revolutionizing photography on the iPhone XS and XS Max. Through advanced computational photography techniques, such as multi-frame HDR processing, these devices deliver exceptional image quality comparable to leading camera phones like the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. By rapidly processing multiple frames to optimize exposure and detail retention, Apple enhances the overall photography experience without compromising user privacy.

In terms of display technology, both the iPhone XS and XS Max feature OLED screens, a significant upgrade over the LCD display of the iPhone X. OLED technology offers superior color reproduction, contrast ratios, and energy efficiency, resulting in a more vibrant and immersive viewing experience. With support for HDR10 and Dolby Vision, these devices deliver stunning visuals, particularly noticeable when viewing HDR content with enhanced dynamic range and color accuracy.

Compared to its predecessor, the iPhone X, the iPhone XS and XS Max exhibit noticeable improvements in display brightness and color accuracy. With a peak brightness of 625 nits, these devices offer enhanced visibility in bright outdoor conditions, while the improved dynamic range ensures more natural-looking colors across various lighting conditions. Additionally, the OLED screens contribute to deeper blacks and higher contrast ratios, enhancing the overall visual experience.

Another area of enhancement in the iPhone XS and XS Max is the speaker system, which now delivers fuller and more immersive sound quality. With stereo speakers located at the top earpiece and bottom edge, these devices offer a balanced audio experience suitable for multimedia consumption, gaming, and music playback. The XS Max, in particular, benefits from slightly larger speaker drivers, resulting in superior sound performance comparable to some laptops.

Despite these advancements, some users may feel that Apple has missed opportunities to fully utilize the larger screen real estate of the XS Max. While features like split-screen view and landscape mode on the home screen are absent, the absence of these functionalities may be attributed to the design constraints imposed by Face ID, which requires the device to be held upright for authentication.

The iPhone XS and XS Max represent significant advancements in smartphone technology, offering unparalleled performance, photography capabilities, and user experience. With features like the neural engine, OLED displays, and improved speakers, these devices push the boundaries of what’s possible in a smartphone while maintaining Apple’s commitment to user privacy and security.

The limitation of landscape mode for certain functions, such as the keyboard layout, may stem from design considerations, particularly regarding Face ID functionality. While accommodating landscape mode would be a welcomed enhancement, it’s possible that Apple prioritizes other features or maintains consistency across its devices. Additionally, the enlarged interface elements on the larger XS Max model cater to users who may benefit from enhanced visibility, particularly individuals with visual impairments or those who prefer larger text and icons.

The trend toward larger screens reflects the growing demand for immersive content consumption experiences. Whether browsing the web, watching videos, or playing games, users appreciate the expansive canvas provided by larger displays.

This preference parallels the shift toward larger monitors for computers and the prevalence of large-screen TVs, despite reaching the resolution ceiling with 4K technology. While the enjoyment of content remains consistent across both XS and XS Max models, there’s no groundbreaking innovation exclusive to the XS Max that distinguishes it significantly from its smaller counterpart.

Criticism of the keyboard layout is a perennial topic among iPhone users, with many expressing a desire for a dedicated number row akin to those found on Android devices. The convenience of having quick access to numbers without toggling between keyboards is evident, particularly when entering passwords or numerical data. While some users may rely on Face ID and iCloud Keychain for password management, the absence of a dedicated number row remains a point of contention for those accustomed to Android devices’ layouts.

In terms of connectivity, the inclusion of a gigabit LTE modem aligns the iPhone XS and XS Max with competitors like the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 and S9, which boast similar capabilities. However, the absence of 5G support reflects the current industry landscape, where 5G networks are still in the early stages of deployment. Despite this limitation, both devices retain essential connectivity features such as NFC for Apple Pay, Bluetooth 5, and dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac.

Apple’s decision to exclusively use Intel modems marks a departure from previous models, which offered options from both Qualcomm and Intel. While some enthusiasts may have preferred Qualcomm modems for perceived performance advantages, ongoing legal disputes between Apple and Qualcomm have led to the adoption of Intel modems across the board. This move streamlines the iPhone lineup, reducing complexity by offering standardized modem configurations across regions.

The transition to a dual-model strategy simplifies the iPhone lineup, with one model featuring an embedded eSIM and nano SIM, while the China-specific model offers dual physical SIM card slots. The adoption of eSIM technology reflects a broader industry trend toward embedded SIM solutions, offering greater flexibility and convenience for users.

Apple’s A12 Bionic CPU represents a significant leap in performance compared to its predecessor, the A11 Bionic. While previous iPhone models may not have exhibited noticeable performance issues, the A12 Bionic’s enhanced speed and efficiency contribute to an overall smoother user experience.

The CPU’s seven-nanometer architecture underscores Apple’s commitment to innovation, surpassing competitors like Intel and AMD in miniaturization efforts. Additionally, the GPU’s transition from three to four cores results in improved graphics performance, evident in synthetic benchmarks where the iPhone XS and XS Max outperform their Android counterparts.

Comparing the performance metrics of the iPhone XS and XS Max against Android counterparts, such as the Note 9, reveals intriguing insights. Benchmarks like Geekbench scores and graphics tests, including those from 3DMark Sling Shot Extreme, showcase the iPhone’s dominance in mobile CPU performance. Despite the occasional outlier result, such as in the 3DMark test, the iPhone’s processing capabilities outshine those of Android devices.

In real-world scenarios, this processing prowess translates into exceptional performance, particularly when handling tasks like video encoding in Adobe Clips or iMovie. Whether it’s multitasking or running demanding games like PUBG Mobile or 3D racing games, the iPhone XS and XS Max deliver smooth and responsive performance, setting a new standard for mobile computing.

However, it’s worth noting that while these performance improvements make the devices feel more future-proof, they may not be immediately noticeable to users of previous-generation iPhones. Nonetheless, the enhanced speed and efficiency ensure that users can tackle any task with confidence, knowing that their device can handle it with ease.

One area where the iPhone XS and XS Max have made significant strides is in camera technology. Previous iterations, like the iPhone X and iPhone 8, faced stiff competition from devices like the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Google Pixel 2 XL. In response, Apple has upped its game, equipping the new iPhones with dual 12-megapixel rear cameras featuring larger sensors.

These improvements have resulted in enhanced low-light photography capabilities, addressing a weakness in previous iPhone models. Samples taken in low-light conditions demonstrate improved performance, bringing the iPhones closer to parity with the Galaxy S9 series. While the iPhone’s image processing still tends to lean towards warmer tones compared to the Galaxy, users have the flexibility to adjust settings to their preferences.

The key to these camera enhancements lies in computational photography, powered by Apple’s neural engine processor. By capturing multiple exposures and merging them to create HDR images, the iPhones deliver well-exposed shots with vibrant colors and sharp details. Additionally, the introduction of adjustable bokeh effects for portrait mode photos adds another layer of creativity, allowing users to fine-tune background blur after capturing the image.

While Apple touts these features as groundbreaking, similar functionalities have been available on Android devices like the Galaxy S9 and Note 9. Nevertheless, Apple’s implementation stands out for its effectiveness, with portrait mode images exhibiting smooth bokeh and minimal artifacts.

Looking ahead, the iPhone lineup will soon be joined by the iPhone XR, offering a more affordable option priced at $750. Positioned between the XS and XS Max in terms of size, the iPhone XR boasts a wide range of vibrant colors, appealing to consumers seeking personalization options. However, for existing iPhone X owners, the incremental upgrades may not justify an immediate upgrade, unless photography is a significant priority.

Overall, the iPhone XS and XS Max represent the pinnacle of Apple’s smartphone technology, offering unparalleled performance, advanced camera capabilities, and a sleek design. With the imminent release of the iPhone XR, consumers will have even more options to choose from, catering to diverse preferences and budgets. Whether upgrading from a previous iPhone model or considering a switch from Android, the latest iPhones promise a compelling user experience that rivals any competitor in the market.

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