Apple has revealed the first Pro twist on its best-selling iPhone range, the iPhone 11 Pro, which is available in two sizes – 5.8-inch, and 6.5-inch. Those are exactly the same screen sizes seen on the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.
Apple CEO Tim Cook introduced the iPhone 11 Pro on-stage, lavishing praise on its "all-new design," which seems like a stretch to us. From the outside, the iPhone 11 Pro looks almost identical to its predecessor – save for the new square-shape camera cut-out which houses three new cameras and a brighter LED flash.
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Like the iPhone XS and XS Max before it, the iPhone 11 Pro uses surgical-grade stainless steel for the chassis – instead of aluminium seen on the more affordable Apple iPhone 11. As with its predecessor, the front and the back of the handset are glass to enable wireless charging.
However, Apple has created a new textured matte finish for the glass on the rear panel to give the handset a new feel in the hand. It is the only iOS device available with this finish. When it comes to colours, Apple has shaken things up again. As well as the Silver, Space Grey and Gold finishes seen on previous flagship models, Apple has introduced a new Midnight Green option.
iPhone 11 Pro has four more hours battery life than iPhone XS, while the iPhone 11 Pro Max lasts five more hours than the iPhone XS Max. That's for a total of 18-hour battery life for video playback, 11-hours streamed video and 65-hours for audio playback on the iPhone 11 Pro, and 20-hours, 80-hours and 12-hours on the iPhone 11 Pro Max, respectively. Both of these new flagships ship with a 18W fast-wired charging plug in the box to help top-up the handset faster than before.
The new handset has improved dust and water resistance, too. So you shouldn't have to reach for a big bag of rice if you drop the iPhone 11 Pro into a swimming pool, pint, or – heaven forfend – toilet bowl.
Apple says the iPhone 11 Pro range has the first camera system that truly warrants the "Pro" title. The (slightly unsightly) new square-camera includes a 12MP wide-angle, a 12MP ultra-wide camera with a 120° field of view, and a 12MP telephoto camera. These work together to enable iPhone 11 Pro users zoom in 2x and zoom-out 2x – for a total of 4x levels of optical zoom.
The iPhone 11 Pro will benefit from new Deep Fusion technology that takes nine different pictures, including four before you've even hit the Shutter button inside the default camera app to enable new levels of detail from the camera. The results should be much crisper images.
The Deep Fusion system, which won't be available at launch but will debut with a software update in the coming months, is very similar to what Google does with its Pixel smartphone range. In fact, the photo shown on-stage to advertise the system looks remarkably similar to something shot on a Google Pixel 3, with the same (until now) unmatched crispy level of detail.
Apple says the all-new wide camera boasts a new Night mode that delivers "huge improvements to photos shot in indoor and outdoor low-light environments", resulting in brighter images with natural colours and reduced noise.
The triple-camera also uses the same Smart HDR system introduced alongside the iPhone 11. According to Apple, the new system uses "advanced algorithms to finesse highlight and shadow detail in your image" including leveraging "machine learning to recognise faces in your shot and intelligently relight them".
All three cameras in the triple-camera system can shoot 4K Ultra HD video. iOS 13 includes video editing features, so you can tweak exposure levels, brightness, crop the footage and more, directly within the Photos app.
Like the more affordable iPhone 11, the new Apple handset includes spacial audio sound with Dolby Atmos from the front-firing speakers.
It also benefits from stronger glass on the front and back of the handset, faster Face ID facial recognition, and new Haptic Touch system which replaces the previous pressure-sensitive 3D Touch system.
In the United States, the Apple iPhone 11 Pro starts from $999, while the larger iPhone 11 Pro Max starts from $1,099. That's exactly the same price the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max commanded last year. However, in the UK the prices have creeped-up, with the iPhone 11 Pro starting from £1,049 (up from £999) and iPhone 11 Pro Max starting from £1,149 (up from £1,099) for the entry-level 64GB model.
Pre-orders will go live on Friday September 13, 2019 with the first units appearing on store shelves, and dropping through letterboxes, on September 20, 2019.
Both the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max have been ditched from the line-up, with the iPhone XR and iPhone 8 sticking around as the more affordable options, starting from $599 (roughly £629) and $449 (£479), respectively.