The iPhone XS Max is one of two “S” edition upgrades to the iPhone X, which was released back in 2017. With the iPhone XS Max, Apple finally met user expectations and released a phone with a plus-size screen – a staple feature on Android flagships. Till date, the iPhone XS Max has received rave reviews, with many dubbing it as being the best iPhone ever made.
Are you thinking of buying the iPhone XS Max? Is it worth your time and money? We find out for you in this in-depth review.
What’s New with the iPhone XS Max?
The iPhone XS Max is a significant upgrade over its predecessor, the iPhone X. Here are some of the most noteworthy features of the phone:
- The iPhone XS Max has a massive 6.5-inch OLED display, with breathtaking contrast and color accuracy.
- The phone features the best processor Apple has ever made: the A12 Bionic. That’s why the iPhone XS Max, along with its sibling the iPhone XS, is the fastest flagship on the market.
- The camera on the iPhone XS Max is new and improved and includes features like Smart HDR and OIS.
- The iPhone XS Max has an improved IP68 rating (2mins 30m), making it highly resistant to water damage.
Design: Big, Bold, and Beautiful
Traditionally, “S” series phones have always sported a similar look to their base models. The iPhone XS Max sports the exact same look as the iPhone X – except, at 6.20 x 3.05 x 0.30in, it is much larger. It has a stainless steel rim, sandwiched between glossy front and glass back frames. The shape of the phone is pleasing, and the colors eye-catching. At 209 grams, the phone is heavy in the hand, in a good way.
The iPhone XS Max’s gigantic display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 6, the strongest glass protection available in the market. The display itself fits in seamlessly with the rest of the phone, save for the notch at the top. The glassy back makes the phone tough to hold, so we recommend you get a case for it. The home button, which was a standard feature on older iPhone models, has been removed. Overall, the iPhone XS Max looks like a stylish, classy, ultra-premium phone.
Display: Gigantic, Vibrant AMOLED
Apple has exceeded all expectations with the iPhone XS Max’s display. The company somehow managed to pack a 6.5-inch display in a body that’s slightly thinner and smaller than the iPhone 8 Plus. The iPhone 8 Plus, if you didn’t know, had a 5.5-inch display. The iPhone XS Max has an outstanding screen-to-body ratio of approximately 85%. That means watching movies, playing games, or reading books on this smartphone is an immersive experience.
The 6.5-inch screen is super AMOLED. Every pixel has its own light source, which makes the screen capable of displaying true blacks. The phone has a display resolution of 1242 x 2688 pixels, with a PPI of 458. Every picture is sharp, and the colors shine and stand out. Color accuracy is spectacular. Thanks to Apple’s True Tone technology, the display is able to match the screen’s white balance with the surrounding lighting. The display also has outstanding brightness, so you can use it in direct sunlight.
The iPhone XS Max’s camera system has been upgraded significantly. The phone has a dual-camera 12MP + 12MP setup at the back. The primary camera has an aperture of f/1.8 and acts as a standard lens, while the secondary camera has an aperture of f/2.4 and acts as the telephoto lens. The setup is capable of allowing you to capture 4k videos at 60fps.
Smart HDR is one of the biggest upgrades to the camera. With Smart HDR, your phone begins to capture photos as soon as you open the app. It eliminates shutter lag when you take photos. The phone’s software also combines several frames into one for better lighting. The camera’s sensor is better and more capable of capturing photos in low-light settings. Details are very clear to see, especially in daylight. The 7MP front camera also does a great job of capturing selfie-shots.
Performance: Fastest Phone Ever
Performance is the standout feature of the iPhone XS Max. The phone packs Apple’s latest A12 Bionic processor, which has six cores: 2 x 2.5 GHz Vortex + 4 x 1.6 GHz Tempest. The chipset comes with Apple’s custom 4-core GPU. You get 4GB of RAM with the phone and 64/256/512 GB of ROM. Specs-wise, the iPhone XS Max is the most powerful phone Apple has ever released. The hardware is powerful enough to stay relevant for several years.
Does the iPhone XS Max perform well in everyday-use scenarios? Yes, it does! The phone is extremely fast. Apps boot up rapidly. Browsing the internet is lightning-quick. Demanding games like Asphalt 9 are buttery-smooth. If you’re a fan of VR, you’ll love the performance upgrade provided by the iPhone XS Max. The iPhone X was great at VR-AR rendering, but the iPhone XS Max is even better. Also, multitasking with this phone is a breeze. You can use this phone for work, everyday use, and gaming. It will handle everything you throw at it.
Software: Streamlined iOS 12
Apple’s previous OS, iOS 11, was not the smoothest. Often, there was a noticeable lag when you booted up apps, browsed the UI, opened up pictures, or played games. With iOS 12, Apple has gotten rid of slowdowns. Browsing the UI, opening apps, and multitasking is all quick and hassle-free experiences. Apple’s custom apps are all present and super useful. The voice-assistant Siri is more helpful and accurate than ever.
The biggest change you might notice with iOS 12 is the lack of the home button. Instead of the home button, you control the UI through gestures – which is much faster and intuitive, once you get used to the change. The new Screen Time feature keeps track of your smartphone use and can be handy if you want to limit your screen-time. Another feature you might like is Shortcuts (an upgraded version of Workflow). With the new app, you can string together complicated tasks to get the most out of your phone. It supports voice commands, so you create and store several tasks at once and save a lot of time.
Battery Life: Outstanding All-Day Battery
The iPhone XS Max is a big phone with a massive display. It needs a lot of juice if it’s going to stay active throughout the day. Luckily, the phone comes with an equally big 3174 mAh battery, which packs in all the power you’ll ever need. And iOS 12 has excellent power saving and battery optimization. With moderate use, the iPhone XS Max will run all day without needing a charge.
The iPhone XS Max support wireless charging. It charges slightly faster than the iPhone X. You’ll still need 2-3 hours to get it to 100% from 0, so it’s a good idea to charge it overnight. If you want to charge it faster, you can purchase a separate fast-charge adapter. The iPhone XS Max will have no trouble running all day if you use it for net browsing, social media, and the occasional phone call.
The Bottom Line
The iPhone XS Max is an outstanding phone. It’s definitely the best iPhone Apple has ever come up with. It has a crystal-clear display, super-fast performance, excellent camera, and good battery life. It’s a recommended purchase, especially if you’re an Apple fan.
Of course, the iPhone XS Max isn’t exactly cheap. The base model has a retail price of Rs.1,09,900! If you don’t want to spend so much money on the phone, why not rent it instead from RentoMojo? We let you use the iPhone XS Max for a period of 6-18 months for a very affordable monthly price. If you love the phone, you can buy it from us outright after 12 months for a nominal price. You can also choose to switch the handset out for a newer model later.