iPhone XR Review: One Awesome Month With An Unapologetic Android User

  • November 26, 2018

Most people know of me as an “Android guy,” which is something I’ve always worn as a badge of honor. And while I wrote about my time with the iPhone 8 earlier this year, I decided to try something new with the release of the XR: I used it as my main phone.

If you read my aforementioned “take on the iPhone,” then you know I’ve recently gotten cozy with Apple’s ecosystem. But even then, it was still more of a secondary experience for me—I carried either a Pixel or Galaxy S9 as my main phone.

When I pre-ordered the XR, however, I knew it was time to give Apple a real chance. I told my Pixel 2 XL that I loved it, and I would see it again soon, pulled the SIM card, and switched to the iPhone full time. For the first couple of weeks, I didn’t even carry an Android phone as my secondary line—I wanted to make sure I had no choice but to use the iPhone.

So while my first take on the iPhone was more of a look at iOS from an Android user’s perspective, this is specifically about the XR. This is my review of the iPhone XR after having spent a month using it every day.

Build: Attention to Detail at Every Turn

The Pixel line of phones is the “iPhone of Android,” as it’s Google’s vision of what an Android phone should be. It’s the quintessential, premium Android experience. That’s my baseline for how a premium handset should feel.

When I first took the XR out of the box, one thing was immediately apparent: this thing is heavy in the best possible way. It’s sleek and weighty in a way that most other phones are not—it feels premium. Despite being Apple’s “budget” handset, it’s a hot little piece of kit.

The overall build quality is impeccable, again in a way that I didn’t expect. I’ve reviewed many, many phones over the years (mostly Android, of course), but I was taken aback with the iPhone XR. Even compared to iPhone 8, this is a tangible, noticeable, and significant upgrade. The build of this phone is defined by clean lines, smooth curves, and seamless transitions. The glass back flows beautifully into the aluminum frame.

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