Why You Should Upgrade To The New iPhone 11?

Despite the Hideous Square Camera Bump

Every September Tim Cook walks on stage and announces a slate of new iPhones, claiming they are the best iPhones Apple has ever made”. I do not know why this is something he explicitly claims, it’s a given because if the phones announced this year are not better than the ones made last year, the company has seriously failed. Anyways, the new range of phones come in three variants: iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max; replacing iPhone XR, iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max respectively. Gone are the days when iPhone names were as minimalistic as their designs.

Here’s what has changed in this year’s phones:

Design

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Left to Right: iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11

The most noticeable, and personally the most unwelcome, change is the camera bump on the back. All three new phones have a square bump on the right, which, let’s be honest, looks hideous. The only thing that looks worse is these phones in cases. At least, the cameras perform. More on that later.

The iPhone 11 which maintains the same material as last year’s XR comes in 6 different colors. The Pro variants now have a textured matte glass finish which must feel premium on the hands and a new midnight green color option in addition to space gray, silver, and gold; which I dig.

All three offer a bezel-less look, but the devil is in the details. The iPhone 11 has slightly larger bezels compared to the Pro and Pro Max. Although this is not a concern to many, if you come from the iPhone X, XS or XS Max, there’s a good chance this will bother you.

Display

But to those who have gotten used to OLEDs and use their phone for photography and cinematography or watch lots of high-definition videos, the stunning OLED display found in the XS and XS Max gets even better in the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max. The new Super Retina XDR display gets brighter, has a higher contrast ratio and is more energy-efficient. And if Apple arch-rival Samsung is supplying the OLED panels this year as well, then you can be assured they are the best displays in the market.

The one sought after feature that is missing is the 90 Hz refresh rate that One Plus 7 Pro users enjoy.

Performance

Camera

The biggest change in this years’ phones is the camera and the list of improvements here is endless.

The iPhone 11 has a 12MP dual camera setup: one wide-angle and an ultra-wide-angle as opposed to the single lens in last year’s iPhone XR. The ultra-wide-angle camera which allows you to capture 4x more scene was a much sought after feature and although Apple came in with it late, it looks like they delivered. The iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max feature a 12MP triple-camera setup: wide-angle, an ultra-wide-angle and a telephoto.

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The one area in which the Google Pixel hands down beat the iPhone (and all other phones for that matter) is photography, largely due to its software capabilities as opposed to hardware. Apple seems to have learned from this and have taken up its image processing capabilities up a notch. In addition to better and more lenses in their phones, Apple has improved its image processing algorithms, updating its Smart HDR and introducing new features like Smart Rendering and Deep Fusion, the latter combines 9 snaps to create one perfect final picture. All three phones will also get Night Mode capability, which could give Pixel’s Night Sight a run for its money.

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The camera app features a modified interface that allows the user to get an idea of all the different shots possible with the different lenses. The zoom wheel can be used to seamlessly move from 0.5x to 2x, both while taking photos and videos.

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The improvement to the camera doesn’t stop with photography. iPhones have the best video capabilities and they get even better. All three lenses can be used to capture 4K videos at 60 fps and now there is improved dynamic range and cinematic stabilization. The software also now allows you to edit the videos right on the phone.

The front cameras also received an upgrade for better photos and 4K video recording in slo-mo, which they think would be great for what they call “Slofies”. Come on Apple, leave the naming job to the internet.

All in all, the new iPhones have the potential to take back the crown for the best camera in a smartphone, a title it held for many years before the Pixel came into the picture.

Battery

Other

Price

The iPhone 11 Pro is priced the same as last year’s iPhone XS: $999 (64GB), $1149 (256GB) and $1349 (512GB).

The iPhone 11 Pro Max is priced the same as last year XS Max: $1099 (64GB), $1249 (256GB) and $1449 (512GB).

Apple also offers great trade-in values for your older iPhones, which might be the decision making factor for many, especially those who own last year’s models: Up to $600 for iPhone XS Max, $500 for iPhone XS, $370 for iPhone XR, $400 for iPhone X, $300 for iPhone 8 Plus and $220 for iPhone 8.

Apple has discontinued the X, XS and XS Max which means you won’t find it through official sales channels, although it may be selling for a discounted price in Apple Stores and through some third-party sellers until stocks last. The iPhone 8, 8 Plus and XR is still sold by Apple for those looking at an entry-level price point.

Conclusion

Written by

freelance technology writer | sarveshmathi.com

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