Worried about Apple’s new iPhone designs? That’s understandable. Detailed renders of the impending iPhone 11 have split opinion while the iPhone XR2 looks even worse. And now we have razor-sharp images of the controversial design changes Apple will make to its best selling model.
Following the stunning iPhone 11 double up between Concept Creator and hyper-accurate insider Steve Hemmerstoffer (aka OnLeaks) last week, we now have another with hugely popular YouTuber Filip Koroy (aka EverythingApplePro) working with Hemmerstoffer’s leaked iPhone XR2 designs. You won’t get a better look at this phone before the official release, but that doesn’t mean you’ll like what you see.
Koroy’s 3D renders are superb, but they only serve to showcase the polarising new rear camera design of the iPhone XR2. The good news is Apple has upgraded the phone to dual cameras, and the specs are promising. The bad news is what surrounds them. In a baffling decision, Apple has decided to give the iPhone XR2 the same huge, square camera hump as the iPhone 11, despite that phone justifying it with a new triple lens array.
In contrast, the iPhone XR2 looks like a lazy knock-off with large parts of the hump left empty. It’s as if Apple couldn’t be bothered to spend time creating a bespoke design, despite the fact the simple vertical layout in the iPhone XS would’ve worked just fine. I suspect Apple wants the iPhone XR2 to match the iPhone 11 because it unifies the range in marketing shots, but in isolation the design is ridiculous. Especially with Apple’s dubious new colour options.
Koroy’s renders also show how the iPhone XR2 is copying the iPhone 11 by ditching the popular horizon mute switch for the smaller, vertical mute slider used on iPads. As anyone who has used iPhones and iPads will tell you, the horizontal switch is more intuitive and easier to operate. Again, it’s Apple unifying designs but picking the wrong option.
Elsewhere, the iPhone XR2 will look identical to the iPhone XR. So, while the iPhone 11 will get a slight bezel reduction, the iPhone XR2 will retain the thicker bezels of its predecessor which will make them more noticeable this time around. As Koroy states in his video notes: “this the design & boy does it look weird”.
What’s the logic behind Apple’s design changes? With the iPhone XR consistently outselling the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, I suspect the company would like to drive a higher proportion of users to its more expensive models. The XR’s lower price tag means it will always sell, but making the thicker bezels and missing camera stand out more, may successfully upsell anyone sitting on the fence.
But it isn’t all bad news. Internally, Apple will introduce reverse wireless charging (expect a lot of AirPods wireless case ads, literally, on the back of this) as well as the Apple A13 chipset, which is already in mass production and whose predecessors have crushed the competition. Apple is also likely to address the current iPhone XS and XR battery scandal by fitting bigger batteries into the new models’ slightly thicker chassis.
That said, it’s clear 2019 is not going down as a classic iPhone design year. Let’s just hope this third iteration of the iPhone X is really only a placeholder while Apple works on more exciting things.
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