“Apple is currently offering a temporary discount for the iPhone XR in India, bringing the price down to Rs 53,900”

Earlier today, Apple announced that it will sell the iPhone XR (review) in India for a discounted starting price of Rs 59,900 for the 64GB variant. However, if you are an HDFC bank user, then you can avail an additional 10 percent cashback and get the phone for Rs 53,900. That’s a huge discount from the Rs 76,900 price tag that the iPhone XR carried when it launched in India.

So, should you buy the Apple iPhone XR now that it’s priced at Rs 53,900? Is it now worthy of all that hard-earned cash of yours? Is it a better buy than the newly-released Samsung Galaxy S10e (review)? Let’s find out answers to all those questions.  

The pros of buying the iPhone XR in India

The iPhone XR has a 6.1-inch LCD display with an HD resolution, which doesn’t really meet the standards for 2018 flagship. That said, it’s a good display and you will probably not notice any difference between this panel and a 1080p screen on another phone. Sadly though, the smartphone has a wide notch and the bezels are also slightly thicker than the iPhone XS (review). Luckily, the notch houses the FaceID setup, which is most probably the best and most secure face unlock system available on smartphones. It works great, even in low-light, and is fast enough.

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Moving on, the iPhone XR comes with the same A12 Bionic chipset that’s found on the more expensive iPhone XS and XS Max (review). It’s powerful, smooth and despite the 3GB RAM, you will not face any lag or performance issues. Apple has included a 2942mAh battery on the phone, which will easily last you a day, sometimes even more. The star of the show, however, is the software. Apple’s iOS 12 works so well with the hardware, that you will instantly fall in love with the phone. The animations are fluid, everything works as it should and it all looks great. You will also not have to worry about software updates, as Apple usually provides updates for several more years than Android. 

On the back of the iPhone XR, Apple has also included the main 12-megapixel shooter. It takes amazing photos in the light, but the quality takes a hit in the low-light. For portrait photography and video recording, the iPhone XR is a great smartphone camera.

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Of course, how can we not talk about the bright colour options that the iPhone XR is available in. Not only they give the smartphone a unique identity, they also grab one’s attention immediately. 

The cons of buying the iPhone XR in India 

If you are someone who looks at the specifications sheets instead of actual real-life usage, then the iPhone XR is nowhere as good as phones that are half its price, or even lesser. The 6.1-inch LCD display has a resolution of 828 x 1792 pixels, there’s only 3GB of RAM, there’s no 3D Touch, a single rear camera, no headphone socket, no fast charger in the box, and despite the price cut, the XR is still an expensive phone.   

iPhone XR vs Samsung Galaxy S10e

Let’s compare the Apple iPhone XR with the Samsung Galaxy S10e. On paper, the Samsung phone has a better display, slightly larger battery, more RAM and dual rear cameras. The base variant of the phone is sold at a price tag of Rs 55,900. That’s Rs 2,000 more than the iPhone XR, if you use an HDFC card.

The 6.1-inch LCD display on the iPhone XR isn’t as good as the 5.8-inch AMOLED display found on the Galaxy S10e. However, in real life scenario, you will not be able to tell much of a difference. The extra RAM also doesn’t help a lot, thanks to amazing optimisations by Apple. The A12 Bionic chipset is as good as the Snapdragon 855, but the Indian variant of the Samsung Galaxy S10e comes with the Exynos 9820 chipset.  

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Camera performance is also better on the iPhone XR during the day thanks to Apple’s clever HDR. However, you do get an additional ultra-wide sensor on the Galaxy S10e, which is quite nice. The battery life is pretty much the same on both devices, but the iPhone XR is certainly better when it comes to the OS. The Galaxy S10e will stop receiving updates within two years, whereas the iPhone will continue to be updated for many years to come. Both phone also offers wireless charging, and you can also reverse wirelessly charge other compatible devices with the S10e, including the iPhone XR. Lastly, audio lovers would be glad to know that Samsung has still kept the 3.5mm interface on the Galaxy S10e. 

Conclusion

As part of this offer, the iPhone XR price in India is now Rs 53,900, which certainly makes it a compelling, VFM deal (from Apple’s standards). In some ways, it’s even better buy than the Samsung Galaxy S10e, be it a faster and smoother OS, better performance and reliable battery life. While the XR only comes with a single camera, it’s quite capable unless you’re looking for the versatility that the S10e’s triple-camera setup manages to offer. Furthermore, the iPhone XR will continue to get software for at least a couple of years, making it more future-proof. In fact, this is what Apple should have priced the iPhone XR in India when it was launched.