10 Good Reasons Not to Buy the iPhone XS

BY Khamosh Pathak

Published 16 Sep 2018

iPhone Xs iPhone Xs Max Best Features 8

I’m here to tell you, there’s no reason for you to buy the iPhone XS, especially if you’re coming from the iPhone X. There just isn’t that much more interesting stuff in the new iPhone XS to warrant the upgrade. It’s just not worth the $999 extra money. Yes, the iPhone XS Max is impressive and if you’ve been waiting for a Plus sized iPhone X, now is your chance. But for everyone else, you’re either better off waiting another year or buying something else. Here are all the reasons you shouldn’t buy the iPhone XS.

Let’s dive in:

1. New iPhone XS Is Really Expensive

The new iPhone XS Max 512 GB costs $1449! That’s almost $1500 for the top of the line iPhone! The iPhone XS starts at $999 but the model you actually want to get, the 256GB one, costs $1149. That’s a lot of money. Wouldn’t you rather get a new MacBook Air with that, or just save up?

If you’ve got an iPhone X, you’ll still end up paying $500 or more after trading in your old model. And frankly, there just isn’t as much new stuff to justify even spending $500 on this model. The CPU is faster, but not by that much. The camera specs have seen a marginal improvement. Smart HDR is interesting on paper but it remains to be seen if it is going to make a huge difference in practice.

2. Buy an iPhone X Instead

iOS 12 Virtual Trackpad iPhone Featured

There’s a reason Apple discontinued the iPhone X. It’s too damn good. They knew that if iPhone X was in the lineup, a $100 cheaper, almost no one would buy the iPhone XS.

If you’re using an iPhone 7 or iPhone 8, what you should do instead is buy an iPhone X. It’s almost as good as the iPhone XS and you can get it for around $600 on eBay, in good condition. You’ll get the same camera setup, same Face ID features and almost the same performance at half the price!

3. No Killer Feature in iPhone XS

iPhone 6s had 3D Touch, iPhone 7 Plus had dual cameras, iPhone X had Face ID and TrueDepth sensors, along with the OLED display. The iPhone XS doesn’t have any new “killer” features. Smart HDR, Depth effect editing, Dual SIM are nice to have, but not revolutionary.

4. iPhone XS Isn’t That Much Faster

iPhone XS Max Geekbench score

iPhone XS benchmarks are out. And there’s not a huge performance increase compared to iPhone X. iPhone XS Max scores 4,813 in single-core and 10,266 in multi-core. The iPhone X, on the other hand, has a single-core score of 4061 and a multi-core score of 9959. That’s not that much of a difference! Yes, this does not take into account the faster 8-core Neural engine on the A12 Bionic but that alone cannot be a good enough reason to upgrade.

The year-old iPhone X is showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, with the iOS 12 update, it’s actually gotten faster!

5. Your Old iPhone Is About To Get Faster Too

iOS 12 Memoji and iPad Control Center

When you update your old iPhone to iOS 12, you’ll actually see a performance increase. And yes, I know Apple says this every year and no one believes them, but this time, it’s actually true. I’ve been using the iOS 12 beta for the past couple of months and I’ve seen a performance increase even on the iPhone X. This update breathes a new life into older devices like iPhone 6 and 6s. Even the iPhone 5s, which is now 5 years old will see a performance increase after iOS 12 update!

So if you think you want a new iPhone because your current one is getting slower, wait for iOS 12, reset your iPhone after updating, and use it for a couple of weeks before you make a decision.

6. Apple Is Promising To Keep Older iPhone Running Longer

At the iPhone XS event, Apple announced its plan to stop mining the earth completely to make new iPhones. One of the ways they will do that is by making older iPhones last longer. So if you’ve got an old iPhone, go get the battery replaced, upgrade to iOS 12 and see if you can continue using it.

7. Wait For 2019 iPhones

As the name suggests, this was the “s” year of upgrades. There was no new redesign, nothing revolutionary. In fact, Apple used up the quota of revolutionary new features last year with the iPhone X. But this means that next year is going to be an actual upgrade year. Apple might have a new camera system, a smaller notch, and more.

If you’ve already got an iPhone 8 Plus, or an iPhone X, it makes sense to wait for the 2019 iPhones. To make the upgrade really worth your while, and worth the money.

8. Check Out the iPhone XR Instead

iPhone XR Best Features 13

There’s no new iPhone 9 this year. Apple has said goodbye to the old iPhone design with the home button and huge top and bottom bezels. Instead, they released a new $749 iPhone called the iPhone XR. It’s got some of the best features of the iPhone XS, in a package that’s $250 cheaper! You get an LCD display instead of OLED, a single real camera instead of dual cameras, software portrait mode, but that’s it. Almost everything else is the same.

But iPhone XR won’t be available until October 26th. If you’ve got an iPhone 6 or iPhone 7 and you want a brand new iPhone that the big screen, gesture-based interface, but don’t want to spend a thousand dollars to get it, I strongly suggest you wait till the iPhone XR is available to make a decision on your upgrade. Read about why we think iPhone XR is the most interesting iPhone this year in the link below.

Must readThe 10 Best iPhone XR Features

9. The Not So Exclusive Features

Best iPhone X Apps 6

The iPhone XS comes with a new feature that lets you adjust the depth effect on Portrait Mode photos. But you can do that on iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X using a free app called Focos! And want to shoot better photos on the iPhone you already have? Use apps like Halide to shoot photos in RAW and edit them in Snapseed!

The new Dual SIM feature is only going to be available in 9 countries at launch and that too will only work if your carrier supports eSIM technology.

10. No Fast Charging, No Awesome Accessories

The thousand dollar iPhone still doesn’t ship with a fast charging adaptor! I can’t imagine how long it will take to charge the massive battery in iPhone XS Max. Apple has removed the Lightning to headphones adaptor from the box. Plus, AirPower is nowhere to be seen. There’s no USB C to Lighting cable either!

Will You Buy an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max?

So that’s our list of reasons for not buying the best new iPhones this year. That’s our rational argument. But of course, it doesn’t work for everyone, and for every context. If you’re using an iPhone 6 and you’ve been saving up for a new iPhone, buying the iPhone XS makes sense. If you’re an iPhone Plus user who’s been waiting for a plus-sized iPhone X and you can afford to pay the $1099 asking price for the iPhone XS Max, then sure, go for it.

But for everyone else, it’s better to either buy a used iPhone X, wait for the iPhone XR or simply continue using the old iPhone after the iOS 12 upgrade.

What did you decide? Will you be buying the new iPhone XS? Share with us in the comments below.