The iPhone XS is the best iPhone you can buy right now. It's Apple's flagship smartphone and offers everything you will want, from a stunning display to a market-leading camera.

Top pick

iPhone XS

The perfect iPhone for almost everyone

The iPhone XS is the Apple smartphone for everyone, no matter if you are a tech aficionado or someone who just wants their phone to work. It's packed with market-leading tech like Face ID and dual-camera that enhance the experience. Powerful, beautiful, and robust, it does it all.

Who should buy the iPhone XS?

People who are looking for an iPhone with all the latest specs and have the budget to spend. The iPhone XS isn't cheap, but it offers everything you are looking for in an Apple smartphone. Yes, there are cheaper iPhones available, however, the iPhone XS is the best Apple phone right now without any compromises.

Is it a good time to buy the iPhone XS?

Of course! The only reason you need to buy is a desire to do so. Apple will unveil its next smartphone in September 2019, but the iPhone XS is future-proof and ready to last at least a couple of years.

Reasons to buy

  • OLED display
  • Beautiful and durable design
  • Face ID
  • Market-leading camera
  • Intuitive software

Reasons not to buy

  • Expensive
  • No home button

As good as it gets

The iPhone XS may have gotten lost in the shuffle of the iPhone XR and the iPhone XS Max, but that doesn't mean it is any less the device. In fact, it's the best iPhone Apple has ever made. It starts with the stunning 5.8-inch OLED display that you'll be staring at for hours on end. Apple first introduced the display with the iPhone X in 2017, the first time ever for an iPhone, and it carries over the winning display to its follow-up. With a resolution of 2436x1125 pixels per inch (ppi), video and images look sharp while text looks as smooth as it does on paper.

Moving over to the design, Apple outfitted the iPhone XS with a new stainless steel frame, color-match to the color of the iPhone, that has more antennas integrated for better cell reception with 4x4 MIMO technology. That's not really something a consumer typically thinks about, but when you're using your phone and you want access to your apps and data, it really matters. The frame is sandwiched between two sheets of glass providing an uber premium design. The front glass panel is for the display while the back makes way for wireless charging.

Words can't do justice to just how powerful the iPhone XS is.

Looks aside, Apple threw in its A12 Bionic chip that is powerful enough to run a computer but instead will steadfastly power your smartphone for a buttery smooth experience. Words can't do justice to just how powerful the iPhone XS is thanks to the impressive A12 chip. Couple that with 4GB of memory and a gesture-based iOS 12 and the hardware and software experience is second to none.

Like any new iPhone, Apple always includes cutting-edge features to set it apart and the iPhone XS is no different. Face ID, Apple's facial recognition biometric sensor, returns and is improved. It still utilizes the same True Depth camera system consisting of an infrared camera, flood illuminator, and dot projector that projects over 30,000 invisible dots on your face to create a three-dimensional map of your face to use it as a unique unlocking password. However, the second-generation version is improved with a new algorithm that reads your face quicker. Just look at your phone and it unlocks.

Smartphone cameras have grown in importance over the last few years, and it was Apple that started the fad by offering DSLR-like performance out of the iPhone camera starting with the iPhone 4. It continues that with the iPhone XS. The market-leading dual-camera system consists of a 12MP main wide-angle shooter with f/1.8 and OIS and a 12MP telephoto lens with f/2.2, OIS, and 2x optical zoom. Using the two cameras, the iPhone is capable of taking vivid Portrait Mode shots that blurs out the background for a striking effect.

Alternatives to the iPhone XS

All that being said, the iPhone XS is not for everybody. It is very expensive and there are other options that Apple offers that nearly match its user experience while slotting in at a few hundred dollars cheaper. Apple is very cognizant of this fact, which is why it offers older models and why it created a brand new iPhone from scratch in 2018 to appeal to this specific customer.

Runner-up

iPhone XR

Just a few compromises

If you don't care about the best of the best, your best option is the iPhone XR. It comes really close to the iPhone XS while cutting down on the price.

It's no coincidence Apple is pushing the iPhone XR heavily this year. It offers a lot in a cheaper package, making it a winner with consumers who are wary of dropping $1,000 on a smartphone.

Plus-size option

iPhone XS Max

The best of the best, to the max

If you're willing to shell out even more money for the biggest screen possible, the iPhone XS Max is your best bet.

The iPhone XS Max has the biggest display Apple has ever put on an iPhone, at 6.5 inches. For some, that's all that matters. Luckily for them, they also get the very best of an iPhone with the A12 Bionic chip, market-leading 12MP dual-camera, and a premium build that lets you know you got your money's worth.

Value pick

iPhone 7

Some people just want their phone to work

Lost in the tech bubble is that some people just want their phone to work and that's it. Luckily for them, the iPhone 7 does just that.

The iPhone 7 is not the newest iPhone. It won't blow you away with specs or performance, but it still runs on iOS 12 with a solid processor that will perform everyday tasks great. You miss out on newer features like wireless charging and Face ID, yet wired charging and Touch ID still get the job done.

Bottom line

iPhone XS checks every box a potential iPhone customer will want. Design, screen, camera and features, you name it and it does it extremely well, if not to a near-perfect level. If you opt for the iPhone XS, you will not be disappointed.

We recommend

iPhone XS

The perfect iPhone for almost everyone

The iPhone XS is the Apple smartphone for everyone, no matter if you are a tech aficionado or someone who just wants their phone to work. It's packed with market-leading tech like Face ID and dual-camera that enhance the experience. Powerful, beautiful, and robust, it does it all.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Danny Zepeda is a staff writer for TechnoBuffalo and specializes in covering consumer electrics with a particular interest in smartphones.

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