The Wrap – September 14, 2018

All the news you need about Apple’s latest iPhones, including the flagship iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, as well as the slightly less expensive iPhone XR. We’ll also talk what’s new with the Apple Watch, and what’s coming to compete with all of this. All that on a very Apple-focused The Wrap.


For the middle of September 2018, you’re listening to The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup, and if you’ve been watching, listening, or at this point, sniffing the news, there’s a good chance you’ve heard that Apple has a few new phones.

It’s news that goes practically everywhere, because when Apple announces a new iPhone, even people that don’t normally like technology listen up and take notice.

This week, that happened, as Apple put an end to months of rumours and announced its next new phones, the iPhones for 2018.

They come with names that are destined to be mispronounced, like the iPhone 10 S, which actually reads like iPhone XS, and the iPhone 10 S Max, which reads like the iPhone XS Max, names which practically say what Apple will be charging without necessarily admitting to the fact.

And that is a little joke, but one that plays pretty close to the truth.

The new iPhones are expensive, and you will pay an excess if you want them.

Arriving this time next week on September 21, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max are the new flagships, sporting a newer faster six-core chip, an improved set of 12 megapixel cameras, faster 4G gigabit, as well as that iPhone X design quite a lot of people fell in love with.

As is the standard for Apple phones, the new iPhones are very much the same, but also different, because they both have different screen sizes, sporting 5.8 inches on the iPhone XS like last year’s iPhone X, while the iPhone XS Max hits beyond even where Samsung’s Note 9 is, going for broke with a 6.5 inch screen.

You’re probably not going to notice the difference between them, but that makes the iPhone XS Max one of the biggest phones on the market, and it also comes with one of the biggest price tags yet.

We all kicked up a bit of a stink with last year’s iPhone X approaching the $2K mark with its near-$1900 price tag, but the iPhone XS Max offers a 512GB model that can hit a staggering $2369, not even 200 bucks off $2500.

While most people will probably get one of these phones on a plan, these prices will still have a dramatic impact on plan pricing, so if you want one of the new iPhones, expect to get out that wallet and keep paying.

Unless, of course, you don’t need the best of the best.

If you don’t need the best of the best, the quote-unquote “cheap” iPhone for the year is the iPhone 10 R, also read as the iPhone XR.

It has a lot in common with the more expensive iPhone XS models, but the screen uses a different technology, there’s only one camera on the back, and it only comes in one size, 6.3 inches, sitting in between the XS and XS Max.

The iPhone XR also comes in six colours, and it also has a slightly less expensive price, arriving at $1229 for the 64GB model and $1479 if you want 256GB.

But these are by no means cheap, and Apple won’t really have a cheap iPhone. We’re not sure it really ever has had one.

With these announcements, the tiny iPhone SE is no more, and the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 take its place, because you can still find those around the place.

They’re essentially the budget options, while the iPhone XR won’t be out until October.

Before it arrives, though, there’ll be other phones on the way.

We know a new Google Pixel is being announced very soon, and a new Huawei phone is also expected next month.

In fact, it’s not just phones, but also watches, with Samsung’s next Gear smartwatch expected in October as well.

And it will have steep competition from Apple, which has the Watch Series 4 on its way out as well.

The new version of the Apple Watch retains the softened square design, but gets a slightly bigger screen in a thinner case, and while that’s nice, the technology is the main focus here, much of it to help your life.

While there’s fitness tech left over from last time, the new Watch can track falls while also monitor heart rate and take an electrocardiogram, also known as an ECG.

While it won’t do this from the beginning, especially not in Australia, the fact that it’s waterproof and tracks more of your fitness is a good thing.

But perhaps the most useful feature is the price, because the Series 4 takes the $599 price of the Series 3, and now the Series 3 is $399. That’s still a relatively solid chunk of change for a watch that begrudgingly only works with an iPhone, but it means water resistance is available for both.

The good news is its release is soon, so if you’re keen, you’ll be able to try it alongside the new phones next week, which is when the next show will be.

For now, you’ve been listening to The Wrap, Australia’s fastest technology roundup. The Wrap appears every Friday at PodcastOne and Apple Podcasts, and we’ll be back next week for more.

Until then, have a great week, and we’ll see you next time on The Wrap. Take care.

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