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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 17 November 2018

Apple announces three new iPhones: Here's what you need to know

The XS, XS Max and XR are the newest additions to the iPhone family

Apple released its newest product innovations on Wednesday, to much fanfare from fans and the press. Here’s what you can expect from the new phones.

The iPhone XS, XS Max and XR aren’t a huge departure from the brand’s last release, the iPhone X, but they are much larger and have some interesting additions.

The XS Max is the largest iPhone to date – 26 per cent bigger than the previous largest – with a 6.5-inch screen. It will be released on September 21, with a price staring of $1,099 (Dh4.037), the most expensive in this set of releases. Battery life has also improved by a whole 90 minutes for this model.

The XS will be released on the same day, costing from $999. The XS battery will last 30 minutes longer than the current X, and will have the ability to host dual sim cards. It also has the option for a whopping 512GB of storage.

The XR is a slightly smaller and much cheaper option, at 6.1 inches and a price of $749. The aluminium phone, which will come in six finishes and three sizes, will be a welcome addition for those on a smaller budget, but who want features such as the edge-to-edge screen and Face ID.

Apple says all of the new phones have the most durable glass ever in a smartphone, and a 12MP camera that allows the user to alter the depth of field after taking a photo.

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With two of the models starting at $999 or higher in the United States, Apple appears to be taking advantage of a strong US economy, low unemployment and rising household wealth.

The median US household income rose for the third year in a row in 2017 to the highest on record since 1967 by one measure, government data showed on Wednesday.

Piper Jaffray analyst Mike Olson surveyed iPhone owners who didn’t upgrade to last year’s X model, and about 40 per cent of these people said they stuck with existing devices because the iPhone X was too expensive or too small. Now these users have options, Olson wrote Wednesday.

The larger screen is also likely to cater to the Chinese market.

“They have finally added a larger-screen phone so that they can directly compete with the Galaxy Note9 products," Gartner analyst Annette Zimmermann said at the event at Apple's Silicon Valley headquarters, referring to rival Samsung Electronics, which has led the trend towards big-screen phones.

"The larger screen will be very important in China to turn around the trend there, because they have lost some share in the last few years, partly because of screen size,” she added.