Jun 17, 2020 Reviews
Now the title may suggest that the XS is a bad phone; well, it really isn’t. What we mean when we say don’t go for the iPhone XS, is that it just isn’t the best deal for your money. Even though it’s an all around the great phone, it still doesn’t make a solid enough case to be worth its money - especially when you have the XR lying around at a much cheaper price, with better battery life, and a bigger screen. Let’s hop into our review of the iPhone XS and see if it’s worth your money in 2020.
The XS is still an iPhone after all, and will definitely give amazing features and performance no matter what someone thinks about it. The XS comes with a slick looking design, and even in 2020, it looks premium and a top-tier flagship. The glass back is strong as well, unlike the XR, and the front has an OLED display that delivers crisp colors and deep blacks. The screen is identical to the iPhone X, which came a year before the XS. Nonetheless, it’s a great OLED panel and will give you plenty of detail, at just under 450 pixels per inch. Moreover, the display can get plenty bright as well, so you won’t have to worry about sunlight visibility at all with the XS.
The performance is a no-brainer with the iPhone XS, as with the A12 Bionic chipset, it boasts plenty of horsepower in the bag. The 4/64GB base variant has an antutu score of about 350,000, which is better than 92% on the market. We doubt you’ll find a faster phone at the reduced price of the XS, with deals as low as 520 bucks. With the latest software patches as well, you can expect your device to glide through anything thrown at it, be it Instagram or PUBG mobile at HDR settings. Even with a flagship from almost 2 years back, Apple still promises top-tier performance to its users.
The dual-camera setup on the XS is identical to the XS Max, and is a brilliant one as well. The cameras are still one of the best you can get on the market, regardless of the price. The addition of a 2-megapixel telephoto allows for more natural looking portraits and a 2x zoom option in photos. With phones pulling all the gimmicks nowadays in the camera department by including 4 cameras in their module, the iPhone with half the cameras gives double the quality in photos even today. The pictures come out crisp and detailed, with amazing dynamic range. It’s consistent as well, meaning you can take the phone out of your pocket and snap whenever, and expect to get a good result regardless of the effort put in. Videos are best in-class as well, with the new iPhone 11 series being the only one that can surpass the XS and XS Max. All in all, if you love taking photos, then for 520 dollars, you won’t find a better option.
Perhaps the biggest and only downfall of this phone is its battery life and price point compared to the other two versions it was released with: the XR and the XS Max. Simply put, you can get a better phone with a much bigger screen in the XS Max by adding an extra 60 bucks or so. And by removing a good 100 dollars, you can get yourself the XR which has the same processor, a bigger screen (but not a better panel), and a much better battery life.
It’s surprising, but the XS actually has the worst battery performance out of the XR and the Max. You’ll barely make a day out of the phone, with just 5-6 hours of screen-on time at best. This can be a huge inconvenience for many people, and that’s why we consider the XR to be a better option at the price. However, you still get decent fast charging and can juice your device up to 50% in 30 minutes.
Overall, the XS is a good device, and will definitely give the flagship experience that we’re accustomed to by Apple. However, with inferior battery life and a smaller screen, we don’t think we can suggest the XS over the XR to anyone looking to buy an older iPhone model.