Apple iPhone XR review: Should you get the iPhone XR?

Are you after an affordable Apple iPhone with long-lasting battery life and 12-megapixel camera? In that case the iPhone XR might be the right choice for you. However, with a cheaper price, some other iPhone models outmatch the XR when it comes to some of its features. Still, that doesn’t mean that the iPhone XR is not a valid option for anyone interested in a reliable and affordably priced Apple iPhone. 

The iPhone XR was released in 2018 alongside the iPhone XS and XS Max, making it a 12th generation Apple iPhone. In comparison to the iPhone XS and XS Max, the XR is more affordable, but also a bit more modest in terms of its display and cameras for instance. We’ll go through some features of the iPhone XR and maybe you’ll find that the XR just might be the right phone for your needs.


With six different colour options, the iPhone XR offers a lot to choose from. You might just want to consider the iPhone XR over the other 12th generation iPhones if you prefer a colourful phone and don’t care too much for the technical stuff. The iPhone XR is available in blue, white, black, yellow, coral and red. 

When it comes to storage capacity and memory, sadly there is less to choose from. The iPhone XR comes either with 64 or 128 GB of storage capacity. In case you require more space to save your photos, apps and other files, you might want to choose some other model such as the iPhone XS and XS Max which are available with 256 and 512 GB as well.

The size of the iPhone XR, however, is great for a variety of uses from mobile gaming to using social media or just browsing the web and making phone calls. The iPhone XR packs a 6.1-inch display, making it just large enough, but not too small to compromise its usability. The XR weighs 194 grams and can be carried around easily and used on the go.


The 6.1-inch display is just the right size for watching movies and videos or playing games and using augmented reality applications. The display itself is a Liquid Retina HD display that offers a sharp and satisfying picture, despite not being quite as advanced as the other 12th generation iPhones. 

The LCD screen of the iPhone XR can’t quite match the OLED screens of the iPhone XS and XS Max, but still provides a bright image up to 625 nits. To make the picture look even better in a variety of lightings and environments, Apple has included their True Tone feature that is capable of adjusting the screen’s colours and brightness to better match the setting. 

Overall, the iPhone XR’s display is a good and sufficient choice, especially in this price level.


Even if the iPhone XR is lacking the second Telephoto lens of the iPhone XS and XS Max, it is still equipped with an excellent 12-megapixel Wide camera on the back. In addition to the rear camera, the iPhone XR comes with a 7-megapixel front camera. Although some newer models have a 12-megapixel camera on the front as well, the 7-megapixels still work just fine for selfies and other photos or videos.

With the cameras’ Smart HDR feature, the phone takes multiple photos with different levels of exposure and combines them into a single photo with the best parts of each. In addition to Smart HDR, the iPhone XR also comes with Portrait mode and six different lighting effects for taking stunning portraits of yourself and other people.

The cameras are great for video recording and are capable of shooting 4K video in 60 fps as well as slow motion video. The iPhone XR’s cameras also include optical image stabilisation both for video and still photography, making your photos and videos sharper and less blurry.

Processor and battery

The A12 Bionic -chip that powers the iPhone XR enables you to carry out even demanding tasks, such as playing games and using applications with augmented reality. The A12 Bionic -processor also makes using other apps as well as browsing the internet a smooth and swift experience. Yet, there are iPhone models with even more powerful processors. However, the A12 Bionic -chip is a powerhouse that is sufficient enough for most uses one can think of.

As for the battery life of the iPhone XR, according to Apple, the iPhone XR’s battery lasts 16 hours of video playback as well as 65 hours of audio playback with a single charge. This is actually an improvement on the battery life of the iPhone XS and XS Max. The iPhone XR is also capable of wireless charging as well as fast charging with a separate charger.

Technical details of iPhone XR


6.1” Liquid Retina HD display with True Tone

Rear camera

12 MP camera with optical image stabilisation, portrait mode and lighting, and up to 60 fps 4K video

Front camera

7 MP TrueDepth

Face ID

Protect your privacy with facial recognition


Super powerful and intelligent A12 Bionic chip

SIM card

Dual SIM – nano-SIM and eSIM




Lightning connector


4G / LTE, Wi-Fi


Li-ion battery, wireless charging, compatible with Qi chargers

Water resistance

The original waterproof seal IP67 cannot be guaranteed due to the refurbishing process Read more

Size and weight

150.9 x 75.7 x 8.3 mm / 194 g



Verdict: Is the iPhone XR the right Apple smartphone for you?

The iPhone XR’s A12 Bionic -processor, 12-megapixel rear camera as well as a variety of stylish colour options make it a great choice for many needs. On top of that, the XR is a more affordable option over the other two 12-generation iPhone models, not to mention Apple’s newest iPhone models.

With all of the iPhone XR’s additional features, such as face ID and water resistance up to one meter, it is a no brainer if you are looking for an affordable Apple smartphone. Look for a refurbished iPhone XR from a professional and reliable reseller if you want to save even more without having to compromise on quality.

Pros of the iPhone XR

  • Powered by the A12 Bionic -processor
  • Wide 12-megapixel rear camera with plenty of features
  • Affordable price
  • Long-lasting battery life

Cons of the iPhone XR

  • The display is not quite as advanced as some other models’ OLED displays.
  • The phone is missing some other iPhone models’ additional telephoto lens. 

iPhone XR vs iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max

Because the iPhone XR was released alongside the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, you might want to check out those as well. Both are equipped with a stunning OLED display as well as an additional telephoto lens and optical zoom. 

Go ahead and browse Swappie’s selection of refurbished iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max smartphones.

Getting a refurbished Apple iPhone

Once you have decided if the iPhone 11 could be the one for you, go check out Swappie’s excellent selection of professionally and reliably refurbished iPhones

When getting an iPhone from Swappie, you are sure to get a device that has undergone our rigorous 52-testing procedure, so you can be certain that your new Apple smartphone will be as good as new. We also offer a 12-month warranty as well as a free 14-day right to return.

So check out our selection of refurbished iPhone XR smartphones as well as other great products.