Now that the iPhone XS and XS Max have been announced, there has been a lot of discussion – in fact – that these new Cupertino smartphones do not have enough new technology to be worth the price tag.
And while we agree that you have to wait for individual assessments, we advise you not to come to any conclusions until you know more about how the new iPhone is performing in the real world.
Right outside of that, you have to remember that iPhone specs never look super impressive on paper. For example, if you compare the Apple A11 with the Snapdragon 845, the Snapdragon looks stronger with its eight cores and Android phones often double the memory – up to 8 GB instead of 4 GB of RAM. But in situations in the real world the A11 is more powerful, especially in applications with a single core.
Regardless of what the specs say, benchmarks and real-world performance usually bring Android and iOS devices neck-and-neck regardless. New iPhones can even be faster, thanks to the fact that their SOCs are made specifically for Apple devices.
Except, this time around, the Apple A12 Bionic actually is impressively on paper, and once the benchmarks are out, it could be one of the most powerful phones on the market – transcending the 6.6 inch Samsung Galaxy Note 9 of comparable size.
Let's take a step back and look at the raw specs behind the A12 Bionic, right?
The next SOC from Apple has two powerful cores and four energy-efficient cores, for a total of six. Apple claims that this configuration will lead to 15% higher speed and 40% better energy efficiency, according to a report from Wccftech.
From that point it becomes juicier. The GPU is seeing huge improvements thanks to the new 7nm production process. With four cores supporting floodfill, multi-layer rendering and lossless memory compression, we were able to see performance increases of up to 50%. This is not everything new ones tech in the GPU world, but it is still a huge improvement over the last gene and could lead to better game performance across the board.
The star of the A12 show is the neural processor. The new iPhones will shine in AR and AI workloads. The NPU in the A11 SOC of the iPhone X had two cores, this has risen to eight in the A12. Apple claims that this will result in a top performance of 5 trillion operations per second, compared to 600 billion of the iPhone X. That's a pretty huge boost.
These A12 specifications could lead the iPhone XS to the top of the smartphone's performance belt, at least until Qualcomm launches a new flagship snapdragon chip – nothing stays at the top for long.
Look, we understand – with the closed ecosystem and high prices from Apple, it's easy to come to the conclusion that these phones are too expensive compared to Android phones. We're not saying you should buy them – we just think it's wise to wait to see how these devices are performing before the pitchforks are removed from storage.
If you look at the primary competition of the iPhone XS Max, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 – the price difference is not really that radical. It starts at $ 999 (£ 899, AU $ 1,799) versus the iPhone XS Max for $ 1,099 (£ 1,099, AU $ 1,799). If you live in the US, that is only a difference of $ 100 – quite small in this price range.
The Note 9 has more storage space, which we know very well – it can even be expanded to 1 TB with an expensive $ 512 microSD card. But not everyone even needs a lot of storage space on his device, especially given the presence of cloud storage in 2018. Everything else is now in the air.
If the iPhone XS Max is started and it is considerably slower than the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, this becomes a problem. This writer, along with the rest, will jump into the crowd to shout at Apple while it's billions of dollars.
But if the iPhone XS Max matches or even exceeds the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, it becomes an exciting competition.
As we see it now, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is the best phone for anyone who needs a lot of storage space for local music, photos, videos & apps. If you are only looking for a phone that can divert anything you can use, it is best to wait until the complete reviews appear. This way you can see if the performance of the iPhone XS Max is worth the price of entering.
At the end of the day, we know that Apple and Android have their own dedicated fans who can not be influenced in both ways. We do not like it, but we understand it – there is nothing wrong with your preference. At the same time, however, it is not worthwhile to come to conclusions before we have all the facts. These new phones will be launched on Friday, September 21 – maybe until that time waiting to make a decision if you are in doubt.
It is quite possible that the iPhone XS Max is too expensive a device that certainly fails – we do not think this will be true, but the possibility is certain. The iPhone X is still one of the fastest smartphones on the market, so if Apple's performance claims are right, the iPhone XS Max can ultimately be the fastest smartphone out there. At least until the next fastest phone comes out.