Apple iPhone 11 is here! After months of anticipation and a stream of leaks and rumours later Apple on September 10 refreshed its smartphone lineup by launching the iPhone 11 series consisting of the iPhone 11, the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max at the Steve Jobs Theatre in its Cupertino, California headquarters.
For those those who familiar with the nomenclature, the iPhone 11 is the successor to last year's budget iPhone, that is the iPhone XR. The iPhone XR is also the company's best-selling iPhone models from last year's lineup shipping 26.9 million units globally. On the other hand, the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max are successors to last year's iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max.
Apple has made significant changes to its iPhone lineup this year adding better cameras capabilities, smarter sound, funkier new colours and yes, a faster and a more efficient processor to the lineup. The company has also introduced its new iPhone 11 Pro lineup at a price that is comparable to last year's launch price of the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max. For your reference iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max were launched at Rs 99,900 and Rs 109,900 respectively. These are also the prices at which Apple has launched its iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max in India this year.
The good news is that the company has now reduced the prices of its last year's premium budget smartphones. The iPhone XS now starts at Rs 89,900 in India.
A lot of reports in the past couple of months had predicted that Apple might not increase the price of its 2019 iPhones, and it didn't. But what these reports failed to predict was that the company would launch its budget iPhone at a much that is significantly lower than the price at which it launched its iPhone XR last year. That sounds like an early Christmas present. We'll discuss that part shortly.
First let's talk about the features that have remained unchanged in the iPhone 11.
Display and Design
Apple hasn't made radical changes to the display and the overall design of the iPhone 11 when compared to the iPhone XR, if you discount the dual rear camera setup and the mini camera bump. Both the budget iPhone models feature a 6.1-inch LCD Liquid Retina HD display. They have a screen resolution of 1792x828 pixels and they feature haptic touch along with 625 nits brightness.
As far as the design is concerned, the iPhone 11 features the same glass-aluminium body that makes the iPhone XR look so gorgeous.
Now the differences
A13 Bionic vs A12 Bionic
Apple launched the iPhone XR last year with the A12 Bionic chipset. This year Apple updated its processor by launching the iPhone 11 (and the iPhone 11 Pro lineup) with its A13 Bionic chipset. Apple says that its A13 Bionic chipset has up to 20 per cent faster CPU and GPU than its last year's A12 Bionic processor. Apple says that together "A13 Bionic and iOS 13 make up the best machine learning platform in a smartphone."
More battery life
The iPhone XR was the star performer last year. Everyone praised it for providing a long battery life which was unusual for an iPhone. The initial reviews said that the iPhone XR could go run for a day and half without a charge. I have been using iPhone XR for past nine months now and it has been consistently providing me with the same 1.5 day-battery life. Apple says that the iPhone 11 will do better and it will provide users an extra hour on battery life.
To give you some stats, Apple says that the iPhone XR provides up to 16 hours of video playback time whereas the iPhone 11 will provide up to 17 hours of video playback time. Will iPhone 11 surpass expectations? We will take closer look in the coming days.
Operating System and other features
The iPhone XR was launched with iOS 12 on board. iOS 12 had swifter gestures, screen time features, a smarter Siri and stronger privacy features on board. The iPhone 11 on the other hand comes with iOS 13 which has already created a buzz for taking Apple's commitment to data privacy to the next level. It has also been in news owing to the dark mode coming to the Apple devices. The good news is that Apple is rolling out iOS 13 update to older iPhones starting September 19. So you don't have to wait for a long to get your hands on the company's latest piece of software.
In addition to the above mentioned features or the ways the iPhone 11 is different than the iPhone XR is terms of its resistance to water. The iPhone 11 comes with IP68 dust and water resistant technology while the iPhone XR adheres to the older IP67 standard. What this means is that your new budget iPhone will be better at protecting itself from occasional water spills. But that probably won't matter because you don't let you iPHONE in harm's way, like ever!
Lastly, the iPhone XR came with stereo playback sound. The iPhone 11, on the other hand, comes with spatial sound, which Apple says will provide users "an immersive surround sound experience". It also features support for Dolby Atmos technology. Simply said, iPhone 11 will have a better sound compared to the iPhone XR, just how good we will find out in the days to come.
The single and biggest difference between the iPhone XR and the iPhone 11 is in case of the camera, both front and rear. First and foremost the obvious rear camera setup. The iPhone XR features a 12MP wide-angle lens at the back with up to 5x digital zoom. The iPhone 11, on the other hand, comes with a dual-rear camera with a 12MP wide angle lens and a 12MP ultra wide angle lens. It offers up to 5x digital zoom and up to 2x optical zoom. There is no telephoto lens, because that 2X zoom that Apple is claiming is due to presence of wide and ultra-wide cameras. In addition to that, there is a special night mode that is designed to capture better images in low light conditions.
Next comes the front camera. The iPhone XR comes with a 7MP front camera. It features support for recording HD quality videos at 30 of 60fps. In iPhone 11, Apple has taken its photography prowess a step further and replaced the 7MP lens with a 12MP lens. It has also added the functionality to record 4K videos at 30 or 60fps. In addition to that iPhone 11 users can also record slow motion video at 120fps using the front camera of the phone.
Lastly, iPhone XR allowed users to unlock the iPhone only when users held it straight ahead of their faces. With iPhone 11, iPhone users will be able to unlock their phones at varying angles. Just how efficient this new functionality will be we will see in the coming days.
Apple started this tradition of launching three iPhones instead of two with the launch of the iPhone X, the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus back in 2017. Last year, the company did something hip by introducing its budget iPhone, which by now you know is the iPhone XR, in six peppy colour variants - Black, White, Product (RED) and Yellow, Coral and Blue.
This year the company made some changes in this lineup by adding Purple and Green colour variants to the mix and doing away with the Blue and Coral colour variants. The classic Black, White and Product (RED) still remain a part of the mix.
Now the interesting part: Price. Apple launched the iPhone XR last year for $749 in the US. The company introduced its budget iPhone at a starting price of Rs 76,900. This year, Apple took everyone by a surprise by introducing the base variant of the iPhone 11, which is the successor to the iPhone XR, at $699 in the US and Rs 64,900 in India. This price is Rs 12,000 less than the price at which the 64GB variant of the iPhone XR was launched.
Similarly, the 128GB variant of iPhone XR was launched for Rs 81,900, while the same memory variant of iPhone 11 costs Rs 69,000 at the time of launch. Lastly, the 256GB variant of the iPhone XR was launched at Rs 91,900, while the similar memory variant of the iPhone 11 costs Rs 79,900.
Simply put, the iPhone 11 costs Rs 12,000 less than what iPhone XR did at the time of launch. But if you try buying iPhone XR now, the 64GB variant will cost you Rs 49,900 while the 128GB variant will cost you Rs 54,900.
The iPhone 11 will go on sale in India starting Friday, September 27.