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Apple iPhone XS Max review: Plans | Pricing | Specs

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Apple's iPhone XS Max has the biggest screen, biggest battery and fastest processor that Apple has put into an iPhone.

6.5 inches

Display size

1242 x 2688px

64GB, 256GB, 512GB

Internal storage

12MP + 12MP

Rear camera

3,179 mAh

Battery size

Finder rated as Good vs similar phones

Details

Display

Display Size
6.5 inches
Resolution
1242 x 2688px
Pixels per inch (PPI)
458 ppi

Camera

Rear camera megapixels
12MP + 12MP
Rear camera aperture size
f/1.8 + f/2.4
Video recording
4K
Front camera megapixels
7MP
Front camera aperture size
f/2.2

Physical Dimensions

Dimensions
157.5mm x 77.4mm x 7.7mm
Weight
208g

Connectivity

NFC
Yes
Wi-Fi
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Network category speed
Category 16

Power, storage and battery

Processor
Apple A12
RAM
4GB
Operating system
iOS 12
Internal storage
64GB, 256GB, 512GB
Battery capacity
3,179mAh

Device features

Headphone jack
No
Fingerprint sensor
No
Water resistance rating
IP68
Wireless charging
Qi
Launch price (RRP)$1,799
Launch date2018-09
Apple iPhone XS Max
Finder score: 4 How we score our reviews

The good

  • Apple A12 Bionic beats all comers
  • Dual cameras work well
  • iOS 12 is a joy to use

The bad

  • Still no expandable storage
  • The removal of a headphone adaptor in the box feels cheap.
  • Apple charges too much for higher storage variants
  • Battery life is better, but it's still well below the industry's best.

Apple's biggest, boldest and by far most expensive phone builds on the model pioneered by the Apple iPhone X, alongside the smaller and slightly less expensive iPhone XS.

Apple's "S" year phones typically emphasise performance over new style points or markedly new features, and it's very clear with the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max that this is exactly what Apple has done this year.

They new phones are the iPhone X on a dose of steroids, with improved performance, upgraded camera features and new size formats, but the way Apple has not-so-subtly crept up the prices for handsets is a serious issue that any smartphone buyer will have to resolve before buying.


Design

  • It's the iPhone X, but bigger
  • More antenna points around the body
  • Slippery, which is scary on a phone this pricey

Camera

  • Smart HDR gives pleasing image results
  • A very guided camera experience
  • Video stabilisation is excellent

Performance

  • Apple's A12 Bionic is the processor that other processors fear
  • Lacks split screen or a key reason for such a large display.
  • IP68 water resistance, but no change to official Apple warranty
  • Gigabit LTE, but not the fastest
  • Technically Dual SIM, but not in Australia
  • No expandable memory (again), and higher storage choices are expensive.

Battery life

  • Best battery life on an iPhone to date
  • Wired or wireless charging
  • Still lags behind premium Android phones for battery life

Verdict

I'm genuinely torn on the iPhone XS Max. It's Apple's best iPhone to date, it has the best processor in the industry, the camera is good and iOS is easy to use.

It's also very slippery, the battery life doesn't come close to the benchmark of the best Android handsets and, of course, it's super expensive.

Pricing and availability

Compare Apple iPhone XS Max plans

Apple iPhone XS Max specs

Display

Display Size
6.5 inches
Resolution
1242 x 2688px
Pixels per inch (PPI)
458 ppi

Camera

Rear camera megapixels
12MP + 12MP
Rear camera aperture size
f/1.8 + f/2.4
Video recording
4K
Front camera megapixels
7MP
Front camera aperture size
f/2.2

Physical Dimensions

Dimensions
157.5mm x 77.4mm x 7.7mm
Weight
208g

Connectivity

NFC
Yes
Wi-Fi
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Network category speed
Category 16

Power, storage and battery

Processor
Apple A12
RAM
4GB
Operating system
iOS 12
Internal storage
64GB, 256GB, 512GB
Battery capacity
3,179mAh

Device features

Headphone jack
No
Fingerprint sensor
No
Water resistance rating
IP68
Wireless charging
Qi

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