Apple iPhone XS Max review

Added by on 09.14.18 | Last update 04.30.24
Apple iPhone XS Max review

Once a year, usually in autumn, all the old iPhones give way to the new generation. Some of their owners even shudder with doubt. Should I upgrade my device? There is logic in this question - year after year Apple cleverly makes its models more attractive. You can't help wishing for the new flagship. And the iPhone Xs Max has merits that rank it among the most desirable in its class. It's max!

Apple iPhone XS Max Specifications

  • Release date: 2018, September
  • Colors: Space Gray, Silver, Gold
  • Dimensions: 157.5 x 77.4 x 7.7 mm.
  • Weight: 208 g.
  • Screen: 6.5" in, 1242 x 2688, Super AMOLED
  • Camera : Dual, 12MP
  • Chipset: Apple A12 Bionic (7 nm)
  • CPU: Hexa-core (2x2.5 GHz Vortex + 4x1.6 GHz Tempest)
  • Memory: 64/256/512 GB, 4 GB RAM
  • Battery: 3174, ¬†Non-removable Li-Ion
  • Network: GSM / CDMA / HSPA / EVDO / LTE
  • Operating system: iOS 12, upgradable to iOS 12.1.3
  • Sensors: Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer

If you are curious to find out all the details before reading the full review, visit the page for Apple iPhone XS Max Specs, where you will find even the smallest detail about the phone.


The iPhone Xs Max is equipped with a gorgeous display. Even with the largest Apple offered at the time - 6.5 inches. Like the iPhone X, the iPhone Xs Max has almost no bezel around the screen. It also lacks the usual Home button. The weight of the iPhone is not small - 280 grams. Thanks to the 19.5:9 aspect ratio, the device lies comfortably in the user's palm and does not feel like a "shovel". 

The transitions between the stainless metal and glass display frame are smooth, just like on the iPhone X. The combination of glass and mirror polished metal looks quite noble. However, this surface quickly collects fingerprints. 

The device is available in gold, space grey and silver. 

iPhone Xs Max is not water-stained. It is IP68 certified and can withstand being submerged in water for half an hour at a depth of up to 2 metres. 

If you look at the front of the smartphone, you'll notice that the front-facing camera and a row of sensors required for Face IS facial recognition technology are located above the display. Unlocking on the new iPhone Xs Max works much faster compared to the iPhone X.


The iPhone has received an OLED display with a resolution of 2688 x 1242 pixels and a density of 458 pixels per inch. The picture on the iPhone Xs Max screen looks perfect. Seeing the individual pixels is mission impossible. As a rule, the colors on OLED screens are brighter, the contrast is higher, and the black color is actually black. In addition, the screen is thinner. The colours on iPhone Xs Max are as realistic as possible. 

The brightness level of 669km/sqm ensures that even in direct sunlight, you'll have no problem reading the content on the iPhone Xs Max screen. For the display, it's recommended that you select the True Tone setting. It has been established since the iPhone 8 model. It allows the smartphone to adjust according to the light level in the environment. This way, colours are as natural as possible depending on where you use the device. 


Apple loves to set new standards and conquer new horizons. Combining up to 4 GB of RAM and a new A12 Bionic processor has helped make iPhone Xs Max faster and smoother at performing tasks. It's Apple's first 7nm processor. Huawei produces its Kirin 980 processor on this technology.

According to the Cupertino company, each core of the new CPU runs 30% faster and 40-50% more efficiently compared to its predecessor. In the iPhone Xs Max, we also see another chip under the name Neural Engine. It's responsible for the device's machine learning. The improved performance of the new processor is maximally visible in games. Are you a gamer? The iPhone Xs Max will definitely win your heart. 


On the back of the new iPhone you will see a dual camera, which at first glance is no different from the one in the iPhone X. Yes, and here we have a combination of wide-angle and telephoto lens with f/1.8 or f/2.2 aperture. This combination allows to adjust the depth of field and provides a real double optical zoom. As before, the camera is equipped with an optical stabilizer. iPhone Xs Max shoots video in 4K HDR. Additional stabilization helps make videos as smooth and clear as possible. 

The camera resolution has remained at 12 MP. However, the photos taken with iPhone Xs Max turn out better than the ones we know from iPhone X. The model has received a more light-sensitive sensor with larger and deeper pixels. Together with a new A12 Bionic processor graphics chip, these improvements logically lead to more detailed portraits and the creation of excellent shots even when the ambient light is poor. 

The company calls the photon innovations in the iPhone Xs Max Smart HDR. The program selects the four best shots from photos taken with different aperture settings. It then combines them into one optimal HDR image. 

Compared to photos created using the iPhone X, the noise level has remained at the same level. Small structures, such as hair, are more distinguishable even in semi-darkness. Text and small details are also captured by the camera and become legible. Photos taken at double zoom are detailed. You'll especially like how the cameras fast auto focus works. 

And with the bokeh effect, you can shoot with both the front and main cameras. On iPhone Xs Max, adjusting the sharpness of the background can be done even after you've taken the photo. It's super convenient. 

Autonomous operation 

According to the manufacturer, iPhone Xs Max should run 90 minutes longer than iPhone X without recharging. The model has received a battery with a capacity of 3174 mAh. 

The huge iPhone is equipped with a power supply unit that is slightly weak. For example, you will have to spend a little over 4 hours to max recharge your iPhone Xs Max. This iPhone can also be charged wirelessly. Induction charging has also been perfected. 

There are also improvements in charge control. This does not affect the duration of the smartphone, but allows the user to monitor the power consumption of different applications. A "screen time" feature has also been added, which makes you aware of how much time you spend in front of the smartphone. 


If it wasn't for the rather high price of the iPhone Xs Max, it would have been in the top realistic desires of many users across the globe. The smartphone has top features. The huge 6.5-inch OLED display literally makes you fall in love at first sight. The technology put into the cameras is earning raves from people who are fans of phone photography. We must also mention the water and dust protection. Without it, many users these days are unsalvageable. 


  • Excellent performance;
  • Bright 6.5-inch OLED display;¬†
  • Quality cameras;
  • Excellent sound;
  • Top performance in terms of craftsmanship and design.


  • High price;
  • No microSD memory card slot;
  • No 3.5 port;
  • Requires a long time to recharge the battery.¬†

Apple iPhone XS Max video review

Disclaimer: The information presented in this article is based on our team's personal experience with the Apple iPhone XS Max and third-party sources. While every effort has been made to provide accurate and reliable information, readers should keep in mind that this is a subjective assessment. The writing of this article was not paid for or sponsored by Apple.

Richard Taylor

Richard Taylor

Hello, I am Richard Taylor, a technology expert and journalist from the UK. I have a degree in Computer Science from the University of Birmingham. My passion is the latest technology, especially smartphones. That's why I chose to test, analyze, and write expert reviews about them. My technical expertise, combined with a deep passion for technology and years of experience, has made me a trusted source of information. Over the years, I have written reviews for various sites, but for quite some time now, I have been writing exclusively for PhonesData. You can see more about me here or read all my smartphone reviews here.

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