iPhone Xr: What was announced, and what you need to know

Image: Apple

Alongside the new Apple Watch Series 4, and iPhone Xs and Xs Max, Apple unveiled a cheaper LCD iPhone that has the same great design of the iPhone X, at a cheaper cost. Here’s what you need to know about the cheaper iPhone Xr.

During Wednesdays’ Apple Special Event, the iPhone Xs and Xs Max were introduced on stage, touting the largest OLED display ever in an iPhone on the Xs Max, and the Xs being the most powerful iPhone ever. But, it has been long awaited for Apple to create a cheaper model that still features most of the features of the more expensive model. This year, Apple delivered on that promise with the Xr.

Let’s dig in on why the iPhone Xr just might be the most value-oriented iPhone in a long time.


Image: Apple, the iPhone Xr in Coral.

The iPhone Xr keeps the same basic design of the previous iPhone X and new Xs. But, the Xr has a few cool features that actually make it a worthy option compared to its more expensive sibling.

First off, the iPhone Xr features a 7000-series aerospace-grade aluminum body with glass on the front and rear. For the display, Apple went with a 6.1′ inch Liquid Retina LCD display with a resolution of 1792×828 and 326 pixels per inch.

According to Apple, the Liquid Retina Display on the iPhone Xr is “the most advanced LCD display in the industry.” According to the press release, “Innovative engineering allows us to stretch the display into the corners. The result is an all-screen design — our largest LCD ever in an iPhone — that still fits comfortably in your hand.

Image: Apple, the Liquid Retina Display on iPhone Xr.

Despite the display being an LCD rather than OLED, it still features a P3 Wide Color Gamut display and True-tone display technology. Like the Xs and Xs Max, the Xr features HDR10 and Dolby Vision support, along with a 120 Hz display.

Like the Xs and Xs Max, the Xr is powered by the A12 Bionic chip, the first 7-nanometer chip in an iPhone. The Xr also features the second-generation Neural engine that is an eight-core design that allows it to complete up to 5 trillion operations per second. Like its more expensive siblings, the Neural engine in the Xr “is built for advanced machine learning in everything from photography to augmented reality.

To learn more about the A12 Bionic chip, read our article on the iPhone Xs and Xs Max as the chip is the same.

New Colors

Image: Apple. Product Red, Yellow, Silver, Coral, Space Grey, and Blue.

The iPhone Xr is available in multiple colors like (Product)RED, Yellow, White, Coral, Black, and Blue. Being that Apple wants the Xr to be the iPhone for the masses, it wanted to cater to multiple tastes, and allow people to express themselves with their favorite color on iPhone without a skin or case.


Image: Apple

Apple says the camera on the iPhone Xr is “the most advanced single-lens wide-angle camera system on an iPhone.

The iPhone Xr may only be a single-lens camera, but, it does not sacrifice features, detail, or image quality. Similar to Xs and Xs Max, iPhone has long been the leader of smartphone cameras. Again, this year, it is no exception.

The Xr features a single 12-megapixel camera system that is a ƒ/1.8 aperture wide-angle lens. The sensor is all-new, deliveries faster auto-focus, and has larger and deeper pixels for increased low-light capabilities and improved image fidelity. In the press release, “iPhone XR features a 12-megapixel f/1.8 aperture wide-angle lens with an all-new sensor, delivering faster auto-focus, while larger and deeper pixels improve image fidelity and low-light performance on photos and videos. Improvements to the ISP, Neural Engine and improved software algorithms enable portrait photos with a beautiful bokeh effect. Smart HDR brings better highlight and shadow detail across photos.

Like the Xs, the Xr features Smart HDR, Optical Image Stabilization, and a first for a single-lens system, portrait mode with advanced bokeh and depth control, all behind a Sapphire Crystal lens cover.

If you’re a camera nut like me, enjoy these specs:

Image: Apple, iPhone Xr Camera Specs

Up front, the Xr features the same second-generation Face ID and True-Depth sensors as the one in the Xs and Xs Max. The updated 7-megapixel sensor is much quicker and far more accurate thanks to the A12 Bionic chip with improved Neural Engine.

Image: Apple

Being that the Xr has a single camera system, Apple introduced a new Depth Control feature for both the front-facing and rear-facing cameras. According to Apple, “New Depth Control allows users to adjust the depth of field both in real-time preview and post-capture to create striking portraits with a beautiful bokeh effect. Selfies have never looked better with an enhanced Portrait mode on the front-facing TrueDepth camera and Portrait Lighting for dramatic studio lighting effects.”

Dual Sim and eSIM

Like the iPhone Xs and Xs Max, iPhone Xr features faster Gigabit LTE capability and introduces the same dual-sim capability with a digital e-SIM and a nano-sim.


Apple claims that the iPhone Xr lasts 1.5 hours longer than the iPhone 8 Plus. With a total talk time of 25 hours, and usage of 15 hours on the internet, and 65 hours of audio playback.

Image: Apple

Pricing, Storage, and Availability

The iPhone Xr starts at $749 for the 64 GB configuration. It can also be had in 128 and 256 GB models, with those costing $799 and $899 respectively.

Image: Apple

The iPhone Xr will be available for pre-order starting Friday, October 19th, and will be available Friday, October 26th.

According to the Apple website, the following countries will receive the iPhone Xr on those dates: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Japan, Jersey, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the UAE, UK, US and US Virgin Islands.

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