U.S. smartphone maker Apple released three big and expensive iPhones early on Thursday, making 6-inch notched screens and 1,000-U.S.-dollar price tags a new normal for the company's fans.
The new phones are named iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR, all with the "notch" of infrared 3D camera set.
The iPhone XS is the updated version of the iPhone X. It has the same 5.8-inch screen size and almost the same look as the previous product. Also, the good old golden color is back for the XS model.
The Max model has a 6.5-inch screen, the largest in the history of the brand. It also has dual-SIM support which the iPhone lacked for more than a decade.
The iPhone XR is a new naming scheme from the company. Apple didn't specify what the letter R means. The price is a quarter lower and the screen pixel density only matches the lowest standard of the brand. The model has only one lens compared to two in the iPhone X.
But iPhone XR also supports dual-SIM, which helps a lot to people with two cellphone numbers. And the phone has a 6.1-inch LCD screen – an alternative option for users who find iPhone X's OLED screen uncomfortable.
There are various color options for the iPhone XR. This is also true for Apple's 5C model, which only lasted one generation.
The price goes even higher for the whole product line. Last year's iPhone X already broke the 1,000-U.S.-dollar line, and now the iPhone XS Max can cost as much as 1,449 U.S. dollars.
Even the "budget phone" XR is sold 50 U.S. dollars higher than the previous low-price models, standing at a base price of 749 U.S. dollars.
The price saw another rise in China. The low-spec iPhone XR is priced at 6,499 RMB, roughly 950 U.S. dollars, while the highest-spec iPhone XS Max is priced at 12,799 RMB – that's 1,870 U.S. dollars.
The highest price CGTN found for now is in Sweden. If you want to buy a Swedish 512GB Max, prepare to shell out more than 2,000 U.S. dollars.
"Is this a robbery?" asked "Qingfengqiyue" on Chinese Apple fanboy forum WeiPhone.
The posts about new features on Chinese social media seem to be outnumbered by questions about the high price. But complaints about features still exist.
"Apple now only picks up the old features from other companies. I've lost hope in the brand," netizen "Yueyibai" said on knowledge-sharing community zhihu.com, referring to the dual-SIM feature,
"But the buyers are gonna buy, regardless of price, feature or anything," said a reply to the post above.
The iPhone X has been taken down from Apple's Chinese and U.S. websites, validating the rumor that Apple put an early stop to the model's lifecycle.
With the new iPhones, Apple released its new mobile processor A12 Bionic, what it claims to be the best of its kind. Apple said the chip's graphic performance is 50 percent faster than the company's previous product without mentioning what realistic changes the boost can bring.
The smartphone maker also introduced an update to the Apple Watch series, also with a larger screen size.