Like the iPhone 3GS and the pantheon of S-line iterations afterwards, XS continues to brew Apple's tried and true formula. So, what makes this year's iPhone XS Max a compelling purchase regardless of the high price? That's what we're going to explore. While focusing on the XS Max in this article, all comments will also apply to XS, except Max's 6.5-inch OLED display.
OLED display: Inky Blacks & Rich Color
When weighing cost, consider whether the XS Max's stunning Super Retina HD OLED display with its 458 pixels per inch resolution and million-to-one contrast ratio is worthwhile the extra price of admission. In my opinion, it is, but only for some people and use cases. For example, if your expectations have been enhanced by the proficient deep black and wide Super HDR color schemes that the XS Max's OLED display delivers, it would be painful to regress to a traditional LCD panel used in older iPhones and in the lowest iPhone. unit XR.
A screen that steals the show
The Big Letdown-The Notch
About the only space I found on the otherwise spectacular edge-to-edge the screen is notch-the small, black line along the top one that houses the front camera and Face ID sensors. While several of my iPhone X-toting counterparts say they quickly acclimatized to this shortage, I still seem to be distracting and intrusive, especially when viewing content in landscape orientation. Apple's attempt to hide the notches helps reduce the obvious front (Apple's own marketing material completely hides a strategically placed Earthrise wallpaper), but this effort beats some of the symmetry on the screen. While modern apps are slowly upgrading to work in the notch and taking advantage of the extra screen property that XS Max has to offer, a good portion of my older games are stuck in the past, and in some extreme cases, up to a quarter of the screen masked by a large black frame.
Considering that Apple could post Face ID cameras in the new 2018 iPad Pro's thin frame, I hope Max's hook will be a temporary blip in the development of the iPhone. Remember the iSight camera for Apple's Mac computer? The substantial tube shrunk down to a built-in chicken and finally to a tiny dot on top of a Mac laptop. Hopefully, the next generation of iPhone will benefit from the same choppy-free orientation independent design that the new iPad pros have adopted.
Stellar Camera Almost Beats Google Pixel
The rear camera of the XS Max illustrates the level of quality we've come to expect from Apple, but it's still not the best camera I've seen on a smartphone. Some of the filters and finishing effects provide artificial smooth surfaces. Doing so tends to lose the sharp, microscopic facial features such as cameras and imaging in high-end Android phones (especially Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 3) help highlight. Photos taken on the iPhone XS Max are still outstanding, they are just not perfect. Given the price of the XS Max, this may be a mild concern for prosumers who will make Apple address these issues in a future software update before making a purchase decision.