The iPhone 11 has launched. It’s here. And while I was at the launch at Apple’s brand new, redesigned, reimagined, 2.0 version of the 5th Ave. Store, I started thinking about, if I was there… if I was lined up, if I was looking over all the choices… not just one iPhone and only one iPhone any more, but a range of choices and options and colors… which would I get?
And, maybe even more importantly, a day from now, a week from now, if I’d kept my old iPhone for as long as I could, and I needed or just wanted a new one, if I was just walking into any store, or even shopping online, which iPhone would I want for the next year or several?
If that’s what you’re thinking, don’t worry. I got you.
How to pick your next iPhone
Best for most
From $699 at Apple
If you want a modern iPhone you can do pretty much everything with, then you have the new iPhone for everyone — the new baseline — the new 6.1-inch iPhone 11.
From $599 at Apple
If the price of the iPhone 11 is still just a little rich for your blood, even with trade-ins and installments, then you can get last year’s 6.1-inch iPhone XR at a newly reduced price.
Home button love
From $449 at Apple
If Home buttons are still your thing, you can get the 2017 iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus, all 4.7- or 5.5-inches of them.
iPhone 11 Pro
From $999 at Apple
If you want the ultimate iPhone, with an OLED display, extra telephoto camera, up to 512 GB of storage, and fastest LTE, then you want the new 5.8-inch iPhone 11 Pro.
Pro to the max
iPhone 11 Pro Max
From $1099 at Apple
If you want it as big as is Apple-possible right now, then you want the new 6.5-inch iPhone 11 Pro Max.
Need more? OK, let’s dive deeper.
iPhone 11: The new iPhone for everyone
If you need a new iPhone and that’s all you really need. If your old iPhone just won’t make it another year or you’ve sold it or traded it in so your budget says go-go-gadget upgrade go, or if you’ve been using Android as just a phone and you’re ready to get on the iPhone, then get the iPhone 11.
It’s got a 6.1-inch, 1792-by-828-pixel resolution at 326 ppi, wide gamut LCD display, with TrueTone ambient color temperature matching, can go into zoom mode if your eyes aren’t what they used to be, has Apple’s screaming fast A13 Bionic chipset, same as the Pro, a lightning connector, Face ID, spatial stereo sound, Gigabit LTE, Wi-Fi 6, dual SIM, wireless charging, 4m of water resistance, super long battery life, and a new 12mp 2-camera system the includes wide angle and 120º ultra wide angle, portrait mode and lighting, arguably the best night mode, inarguably the best 4K 60 fps EDR video, and new 85º 12 mp selfie camera, including slow mo selfies.
You can get it in black or white, or in new shades of yellow and red, or entirely new mint green or lavender purple colors, with 64, 128, or 256 GB of storage, and for 50 bucks less than what the iPhone XR cost last year — starting at $699.
The 128GB version is just $50 more, and I’d recommend that, especially if you’ve got a trade-in or installments.
Read the complete iPhone 11 Review
iPhone XR: Last year’s for less
If the iPhone 11 is just too much, you can get last year’s XR, with A12 Bionic chipset, single wide-angle camera, 7mp selfie camera, 1m of water resistance, no green or purple but coral orange or sky blue options, and up to 128GB of storage, starting at $599.
The battery life is just a little bit less, it lacks the ultra-wide angle, and it doesn’t have an A13, but it was the most popular smartphone in the world last year and it’ll still do you find this year.
If you really, really still want that Home button, and you don’t care about pretty much anything else, not speed, not cameras, not bezels, not nothing, the 4.8-inch iPhone 8 is still around, but now starting at just $449, and the 5.5-inch, dual-camera Plus version, now starting at just $549.
Read the complete iPhone XR review
iPhone 11 Pro: the ultimate iPhone
If you need a new iPhone and you want the absolute best iPhone available, you care deeply about dynamic range, inky blacks, excessive brightness, and OLED panels, you want a camera that goes from ultra wide angle all the way to telephoto, with portrait mode on both the telephoto and wide angle, the new night mode, long and longer battery life, and know and care about just exactly what 4×4 MIMO LTE is and does, and a textured matte finish to boot, then you want the iPhone 11 Pro.
Here’s what you give up:
Some display size, dropping from 6.1 on the eleven to 5.8 on the Pro. Which also eliminates Display Zoom, in case you need that. The lack of OLED pulse width modulation on the panel, if you know what that is an feel effected by it, and the greater range of glossy colors, especially yellow, red, and purple.
Here’s what you gain:
A higher density, 2436-by-1125-pixel resolution at 458 ppi, 2 million to 1 contrast ratio higher dynamic range, darker, now 800 sustained, 1200 peak brightness OLED display, that third, telephoto lens that gives you 2x optical zoom lets you also get portrait mode and lighting, and up to 4K 60fps EDR video from a different perspective. 4×4 MIMO LTE, like I said, a new battery that can go up to 4 hours longer than before, and new matte glass finishes in silver, space gray, gold, and new midnight green. Plus, the storage goes from 64 GB too 256 GB all the way up to 512 GB. Starting, though, at $999.
iPhone 11 Max: The best and the biggest
If you need a new iPhone but you don’t just want the absolute best, you want the absolute biggest, with everything the Pro has to offer, just more of it offered, with a display as large as its name, then you want the iPhone 11 Pro Max.
Here’s what you give up:
The ability to even try, to even attempt or pretend to really use your phone 1-handed. And, depending on the tightness of your skinny hipster jeans, the ability to slide into just about any pocket, front or back.
And here’s what you get:
Everything from the iPhone 11 Pro, but with a 6.5-inch display and a battery than can go an extra 5 hours, not just 4. Same colors, same storage options, but starting at $1099.
Which iPhone are you getting?
OK, I know that got a little complicated, especially towards the end there. So I’m going to stop the record and rewind that.
If you just want a modern iPhone you can do pretty much everything with, then you have the new iPhone for everyone, the new baseline, the new 6.1-inch iPhone 11 starting at $699.
If that’s still just a little rich for your blood, even with trade-ins and installments, then you can get last year’s 6.1-inch iPhone XR at a newly reduced price, starting at $599.
If Home buttons are still your thing, you can get the 2017 iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus, all 4.7- or 5.5-inches of them, now starting at $449.
If you want the ultimate iPhone, with an OLED display, extra telephoto camera, up to 512 GB of storage, and fastest LTE, then you want the new 5.8-inch iPhone 11 Pro, starting at $999.
If you want it as big as is Apple-possible right now, then you want the new 6.5-inch iPhone 11 Pro Max, starting at $1099.
And, if you’re still not sure, just get a black iPhone 11 with 128 GB of storage and enjoy.
At least that’s my rec. Now, hit up the comments and tell me yours!
VECTOR | Rene Ritchie
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