iPhone XR

The price is great, but are there too many com­pro­mises?


We were ex­cited when we heard Ap­ple were re­leas­ing a new bud­get iphone, mainly be­cause Ap­ple’s last foray into sav­ing cus­tomers money was the bril­liant iphone SE. It lacked a bit in screen size, but that wasn’t far off the only com­pro­mise. You see, Ap­ple don’t re­ally do bud­get. Or maybe the term ‘bud­get’ is a bit of a red her­ring. The iphone XR – hope­fully you’re keep­ing up with all these nam­ing con­ven­tions – still costs £749/$749 to buy it out­right. But that is not far off 25 per cent cheaper than the low­est­priced en­try in the iphone XS range, and that makes it po­ten­tially the most ex­cit­ing iphone Ap­ple have re­leased this year. As long as the com­pro­mises aren’t too dras­tic.


The main com­pro­mise is with the dis­play. In­stead of the HDR Su­per Retina OLED dis­play that you’ll find in the flag­ship XS range (or Sam­sung and Google’s high-end phones for that mat­ter), iphone XR sports a tra­di­tional LCD dis­play. Now there is a dif­fer­ence –

Ap­ple says about £250/$250’s worth – but it all de­pends on how much you value dis­play qual­ity. Be­cause if you’re up­grad­ing from, say, an iphone 7, then an iphone XR will keep you more than happy. It’s still a very good smart­phone dis­play, pack­ing in 326 pix­els per inch. Colours are vi­brant and im­ages nat­u­ral.

Ap­ple has called its new LCD Liq­uid Retina – a bit of a fancy name, but we can’t re­ally find fault. It isn’t as good as the OLED iphone XS dis­play, but put Liq­uid Retina side by side with last year’s iphone 8 and per­for­mance looks iden­ti­cal. All in all, that’s not re­ally much of a com­pro­mise is it?

New de­sign

The LCD has forced a slight re­design, and it is a strik­ing dif­fer­ence from the iphone XS mod­els. Be­cause the LCD re­quires a sin­gle back­light, Ap­ple has packed it into the bezel, which is rather big and no­tice­able. It gives the hand­set a less premium feel, but un­less

iphone XR comes in six new fin­ishes: white, black, blue, yel­low, co­ral (above) and (PROD­UCT)RED

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