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iPhone Xs and iPhone Xr: What’s the difference?

iPhone XR yellow homescreen hero size

Apple has announced three new iPhones, and they don’t come cheap. In fact, calling the iPhone Xs and Xr cheap is like calling the Rolls-Royce Phantom a wheely broom-broom.

But they are less pricey than the iPhone Xs Max. If you want to know why that is, how they compare and, ultimately, which is right for you, then read on as we run down all the key specs.

iPhone Xs and iPhone Xr: Design

iPhone Xr red back

If you’ve seen the iPhone X, then you know what the iPhone Xs looks like. The two are nigh-on identical, with the same notch, same all-screen front and same lack of a home button.

The iPhone Xr is a more drastic departure from the rather staid, austere look of the higher-end handsets. It comes in a range of new colours, and is a bit brighter and more fun than its pricier brethren. It too has the same all-screen design with a notch housing the front-facing camera and sensors, and no home button.

The Xr has aluminium edges instead of the Xs’ stainless steel, so it doesn’t feel quite as premium in the hand. It’s just one of a few compromises Apple made in order to bring the price down.

iPhone Xs and iPhone Xr: Performance

iPhone XS max A12 Bionic

The Xs has a new chipset, called the A12. This is quicker and more efficient than the A11, which means longer battery life. It also boasts 4GB of RAM. Apple hasn’t officially confirmed this, as it doesn’t reveal the RAM of its phones. But it should be confirmed in the next few days from benchmark tests.

The Xr has the same A11 processor as found in the original iPhone X. That’s still plenty fast enough for all but the most processor-intensive of tasks. It has 3GB of RAM. Again, that should do you fine.

iPhone Xs and iPhone Xr: Screen

iPhone XS stereo speakers hero size

Apple has gone big on this year’s iPhones, quite literally. They’re all huge.

The Xs has the same 5.8-inch OLED display we fell in love with on the iPhone X. The 2,436 x 1,125-pixel resolution is super sharp, and the high contrast ratio means the difference between light and dark parts of the picture should be massive, with more gradual steps in between.

The result? A clear picture, even for moodily-shot murky dramas.

The Xr is a bit of a step down. While its screen is bigger (6.1 inches), it uses LCD technology, which is less advanced. It means the picture won’t be as sharp, and the contrast ratio nowhere near as impressive.

Still, it’s pretty high resolution, so you’re not going to exactly suffer watching films on it.

iPhone Xs and iPhone Xr: Price

iPhone XS camera true depth

The Xr is the cheapest of the new range, but it still comes in at a wallet-busting £749. The Xs starts at the same as the iPhone X: £999.

Who would have thought we’d reach a time when £1,000 didn’t even get you a flagship smartphone? Crazy times indeed.

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