iPhone XR: All you need to know about Apple’s ‘affordable’ new iPhone

Release date, specs, price and pre-order: Everything you need to know about the iPhone XR

After a year of rumours Apple would unveil an iPhone 9 to replace the iPhone 8, we’ve instead got the iPhone XR. This more ‘affordable’ phone sits alongside the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.

Here’s all the latest iPhone XR specs, information and everything else we know about the next iPhone, including its release date and price in the UK and US. Plus, full details on how to pre-order the iPhone XR.

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iPhone XR key features at a glance

The iPhone XR looks a lot like the iPhone X, featuring an edge-to-edge display and a ‘notch’ at the top of the screen that houses the facial recognition sensors. That means, as expected, there’s no Home button. Here’s a brief look at all the iPhone XR’s key features and specs.

  • Launched September 12; release date October 23 (pre-orders open October 16)
  • 6.1-inch LCD ‘Liquid Retina’ screen sized between the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus
  • iPhone X-style ‘notch’
  • 1.5 hours more battery life than the iPhone 8 Plus (according to Apple)
  • Face ID (no Home button)
  • Faster Apple A12 7nm SoC
  • Single rear camera with simulated ‘bokeh’ effect
  • Dual-SIM in China-only – eSim in the rest of the world
  • IP67 water-resistant (up to 1m for 30 minutes)
  • Black, white, red, yellow, coral and blue colour options

iPhone XR release date – When can I pre-order the iPhone XR?

Apple’s next-gen iPhone models were officially unveiled at an event at the Steve Jobs Theater on September 12.

You’ll be able to pre-order the iPhone XR from Friday October 16 2018, with it shipping on October 23. That’s a little later than the iPhone XS and XS Max, its more expensive OLED-toting siblings.

Check out our guide to iPhone XR pre-order deals to find out how to get the most bang for your buck.

iPhone XR price – How much will the iPhone XR cost when it launches?

The iPhone XR will cost $749/£749 for the entry-level 64GB model. Prices go up to £799/$799 for the 128GB model and £899/$899 for the iPhone XR with 256GB of storage.

That’s a high price for the baby of the group, but still well below the top-specced iPhone XS Max, which costs a whopping £1449!

Read more: Best smartphone

iPhone XR specs

The iPhone XR packs many of the features seen in its pricier siblings – but not all. To discover the differences between the new iPhones, read our comparison of iPhone XS vs iPhone XS Max vs iPhone XR. The nub of it is that the iPhone XR has an LCD screen instead of an OLED one, a single rear camera instead of dual-lens, no 3D Touch and a lower level of water-resistance.

Related: OLED vs LCD

iPhone XR
Screen 6.1-inch LCD; 1792 x 828, 326PPI
Dimensions 150.9mm x 75.7mm x 8.3mm, 194g
OS iOS 12
Processor Apple A12 Bionic hexa-core 7nm SoC
Storage 64GB/128GB/256GB
Main camera 12MP, OIS, f/1.8 aperture, Smart HDR
Front camera 7 megapixels
Battery life 1.5 hours more than iPhone 8 Plus
Colours White, Black, Blue, Yellow, Coral, (PRODUCT)RED
Wireless Charging Yes (Qi compatible)
Price £/$749 64GB, £/$799 128GB, £/$899 256GB
Launch date 12 September
Pre-orders from 16 October
Shipping 23 October
Water-resistance IP67: up to 1m for 30 minutes
Extras Dual SIM (China only); eSIM rest of world

iPhone XR – Performance

Apple has bundled a brand new, custom-built chip in the iPhone XR. Called the Apple A12 Bionic (the last one was the Apple A11 Bionic), it offers a number of battery and performance improvements according to Apple, as well as a significantly enhanced image signal processor (ISP).

For reference, the current A11 Bionic has two high-performance cores that are 25% faster than those of the two-year-old A10 Fusion, and four high-efficiency cores, which are around 70% snappier than those found on the A10 Fusion, according to Geekbench benchmark results.

The only information concerning speed that we received from Apple was that the A12 provides 30% faster app launching and a 50% improvement over the A11. A number of companies, including Samsung and TSMC – both of which have supplied Apple with components in the past – are working on a 7nm process that cuts the distance between transistors, so it’s no surprise that the tech has made an appearance on the much-anticipated iPhone XR.

It all sounds like a decent performance boost.

Related: Best iPhone

iPhone XR – Colours

The iPhone XR is available in no less than six colour options. Some (white, black and red) will be familiar to fans of Apple devices, while others are more vibrant new flavours designed to appeal to a wider audience.

The new iPhone XR colours are coral, yellow and blue.

Here they all are.

iPhone XR colours

iPhone XR – Battery life

The anticipated 18W USB-C fast charger won’t be included in the box of the iPhone XR, which is a shame. The XR is fast-charge compatible, providing 50% battery life with a 30-minute charge, but you’ll need to pay extra for the fast charger and that’s a real shame considering pretty much every Android phone (even the budget Moto G6) comes with the ability to charge quickly.

The firm asks for $49 for its aftermarket 29W fast charger, then a further $19 for the necessary USB-C to Lightning cable.

Apple didn’t announce the size of the battery, but it claims the iPhone XR offers an additional 1.5 hours of use over the iPhone 8 Plus. Here are Apple’s quoted figures:

  • Talk-time (wireless): Up to 25 hours
  • Internet use: Up to 15 hours
  • Video playback (wireless): Up to 16 hours
  • Audio playback (wireless): Up to 65 hours
  • Fast‑charge capable: Up to 50% charge 30 minutes (requires USB-C charger)
  • Built-in rechargeable lithium‑ion battery
  • Wireless charging (works with Qi chargers)

iPhone XR – Camera

The iPhone XR comes with a 12-megapixel, wide-angle rear camera with an f/1.8 aperture, OIS and Smart HDR. Even though it’s only a single lens, Apple has included Portrait mode, which allows for bokeh effects. In the past this feature has only been included on iPhones with a dual camera setup.

We’ll need to test the iPhone XR to find out if the bokeh effect is as good as others.

There’s also support for 4K video recording up to 60fps and slow-motion recording at 240fps.

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