Why iPhone 11 is the only phone to buy in 2019

Apple are extending their lead

iPhone 11 launched yesterday, with the usual refresh of Apple’s lineup. The launch was nothing out of the ordinary. The new iPhone 11 and 11 Pro was announced. Both improving on what the previous generation already did rather well. The A13 chip is astonishingly fast. There are now 2 camera’s on the iPhone 11 and 3 on the Pro. Using the A13’s neural engine to create maybe the best pictures a smartphone can take by utilizing deep learning.

iPhone is 3 years ahead of the pack

iPhone 11 starts at $699. At this price point it simply annihilates any other device on the market. The iPhone 11 delivers the best performance of any smartphone out there by an extreme margin. The iPhone 7 (launched 2016) is still only 5% or so behind the Galaxy S10+ in terms of performance. This means Samsung’s newest flagships perform about the same as a 3 year old iPhone, and don’t forget, Samsung is the leader in the Android Phone space. The iPhone 11 packs 200% the performance of the S10+. That’s because the fastest chip android phones have to offer up is the snapdragon 855 or Samsung’s Exynos 9825 and both can only output about 50% of the performance of the new A13. “according to geekbench”

The A12 is so far ahead of the industry that it will still be competitive with the best Android smartphones in two years.

Ben Thompson, Stratechery
“The GPU Performance chart looks more or less exactly the same”

It also has arguably the best camera system of any smartphone. Sporting 2 lenses, one wide and one ultra-wide. It’s extreme processing speed, and the utilization of its newly developed neural engine in the A13 chip let’s it pick out the best parts of each photo and create an image that not only looks professional, but actually is.

Here we can see some of the layers the iPhone processes. Over a Trillion operations per image.

Why is it called the 11 “Pro”?

For now we’ve only talked about the 11, but what about the 11 Pro? There are some differences. The pro name comes from the idea that the 11 Pro is made for photographers and cinematographers. It is made out of stainless steel, instead of the standard aircraft grade aluminium. Making it even tougher. The entire back of the phone is also milled out of a single piece of glass, again making it more tough and durable. It’s rated IP68, meaning it’s waterproof down to 4m depth, for up to 30 minutes. The iPhone 11 is in comparison waterproof down to 2m for 30 minutes.

The screen has also changed. The screen supports HDR with peak brightness up to 1200(!) nits with HDR enabled content, meaning a wider color gamut and more accurate colors. It utilizes the XDR display technology from the Mac Pro XDR display. Which in practice makes it almost as good as a professional display that costs many thousand dollars for viewing and editing any video and photo content, even in HDR.

The new camera layout of the iPhone 11 Pro – Looks kind of like a kitchen stove

There were other improvements too. The battery life for their Pro models have increased their battery life compared to the Xs and Xs Max by 4 and 5 hours for the 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max respectively. There’s also a “6th sense” added that is used to determine what apple device you are pointing to when airdropping, making targeted file sharing in crowded offices or cafe’s easier.

Conclusion

The new iPhone 11 is a rather large improvement spec wise. The camera upgrade is huge. The performance from the A13 makes other phones look like they’re 3 years old, and the improved battery life and screen is a nice cherry on top. The design hasn’t changed that much, but it doesn’t really need to. The new iPhone 11 is a killer deal, and the Xr which they’re keeping in their sales range is now an even better deal with a discount of $150. What we’d like to see for the next iPhone is USB-C, removal of the notch and a wide angle camera. What we’d like to see from Apple though, is the AR glasses they’ve been working on.

Prices have been slashed. The new iPhone 11 is cheaper than the Xr when it launched.

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