The iPhone Xs & Xr Are Here: Take A First Look At Apple's Latest Devices

It’s been a full year since Apple unveiled its most expensive, premium iPhone, the iPhone X, introducing new words — Animoji! The notch! Face ID — into our collective vocabulary, relegating the home button to less expensive models, and officially kicking off the era of the £999 smartphone.
Still, the event left many questions in the minds of users: Would prices on future iPhones continue to rise? Would the home button be completely phased out? Would we ever see an iPhone 9?
Yesterday, Apple CEO Tim Cook answered those questions and more when he took to the stage at Apple Park’s Steve Jobs theatre to unveil the latest additions to Apple’s iPhone lineup and the newest Apple Watch. Ahead, a rundown of the most important product reveals. (Want to know how to pre-order the new iPhone? Head to our pre-order guide to find out.)
Advertisement
Keep checking back: Refinery29 will continue updating this piece live throughout the Apple Event with news on new devices.
iPhone Xs
The rumours were true: The next generation iPhone X is called the Xs.
It doesn’t look much different than the X, but comes in a stunning new gold finish as well as silver and space grey. The 5.8-inch super retina display has greater dynamic range, meaning you’ll see more colours in the photos you take and videos you stream.
There’s also a 6.5-inch iPhone Xs, called the iPhone Xs Max, with a super retina display that Apple says is the biggest display ever on an iPhone, thanks to the edge-to-edge screen.
Photo: Apple.
Photo: Apple.
A new chip promises to make the Xs and Xs Max perform faster when you're sharing photos, streaming, and even unlocking your iPhone with Face ID. The storage capacity is also worthy of note: The Xs can store up to 200,000 photos.
There is no additional camera this time around (you'll still see only two cameras on the rear of the phone), but the 12 megapixel wide-angle camera has a new sensor and the true-tone flash has been improved. A new feature called Smart HDR will merge multiple photos — taken simultaneously with a single press of the shutter button — to provide the highest quality photo possible. In Portrait Mode, the background blur is improved and you can edit the photo after taking it to adjust the depth of field, increasing or decreasing that blur (to be fair, this is something Samsung users are already familiar with).
Advertisement
There's a much-needed battery boost, too: You'll get 30 minutes more battery life on the iPhone Xs, and an hour and a half more on the iPhone Xs Max than on the iPhone X.
You can get both iPhone Xs and Xs Max in three sizes: 64 GB, 256 GB, and 512 GB. You won't find any cost breaks here: Xs, like X before it, starts at £999. Xs Max, meanwhile, starts at £1,099. Pre-orders will begin this Friday, September 14, and the phones ship on September 21.
iPhone Xr
There's also one more iPhone, called the iPhone Xr, that comes in the fun colours many have speculated about for years now — blue, coral, red, and yellow, in addition to white and black.
Photo: Apple.
Photo: Apple.
There's still an edge-to-edge display (6.1-inch), this time LCD, meaning the home button is gone. In its place, you'll use Face ID like you do on the X and, now, Xs and Xs Max. The iPhone Xr only has one camera, the same 12 megapixel wide-angle camera that's in the Xs and Xs Max. You'll get an hour and a half more battery life on the Xr than you did on the iPhone 8 Plus.
Photo: Apple.
Photo: Apple.
You can get the iPhone Xr in 64 GB, 128 GB, and 256 GB and it's slightly more affordable. Unfortunately, pre-orders for Xr will not begin until October 19; it will ship on Oct 26.
Apple Watch
As predicted, Apple unveiled the next generation of the Apple Watch, Series 4. Watch now has a sleeker, completely redesigned edge-to-edge display with curved corners. The screens are over 30% larger than on previous models, making it much easier to see and read more information at once. Fortunately, no bulk has been added: Series 4 is thinner than Series 3.
Advertisement
Photo: Apple.
Photo: Apple.
There are also playful new watch faces, including ones that let you simultaneously track multiple time zones while traveling or add photos of friends you contact regularly (simply tap one of the photos to call straight from the screen).
Watch’s speaker has also been redesigned to be 50% louder, and the microphone has been moved to the side (below the digital crown) to limit echoing.
As for health upgrades — a major focus of Watch since the beginning — Series 4 can now detect when its wearer falls by recognising specific movements associated with a tumble. You'll get an alert from Siri to contact emergency services that you can act on or choose to ignore. There's also a big focus on heart health: Watch will be able to detect abnormally low heart rates and irregular rhythms indicative of atrial fibrillation. Users can also take an on-demand electrocardiogram (ECG) straight from their wrist to share with their doctors. Both the ECGs and heart rhythm alerts received FDA-clearance.
Despite the many additions, Apple says Watch still has all-day battery life. Series 4 is available in silver, gold and space grey aluminium finishes, as well as silver and space black stainless steel. There's also a new gold stainless finish. The price starts at £359 for the GPS only model (Series 4 with GPS and cellular will start at £499), and pre-orders begin this Friday, September 14. The Watch will be available in-store on September 21.
Advertisement

More from Tech

Watch

R29 Original Series