Apple’s December quarter is shaping up to be a potential record-breaker, thanks in part to the imminent arrival of the iPhone XR for which preorders go live on Friday.
There are optimistic as well as more muted opinions out there, but if you believe well-connected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the XR is going to sell like hotcakes. Specifically, demand appears to be surpassing initial estimates, according to a recent investor note from Kuo which also notes that Apple may sell more than 38 million XR units during the 2018 holiday quarter. The wait for it, meanwhile, is almost over, as in-store availability for the XR will follow one week after preorders begin this Friday at 12:01 a.m. PST on apple.com and via the Apple Store app.
XR preorders for more than 50 countries will start on Friday, with Apple saying more than a dozen countries will be added not long after. The handset will be available in Apple Stores starting October 26 at 8 a.m. local time, the same day that iPhone XS and XS Max models will also be available in more 30 additional countries.
No doubt the XR being Apple’s lower priced model — compared to the other two new iPhone handsets, the XS and XS Max — will help spur upgrades. As a reminder, the XR sports a 12 MP rear camera, a Face ID camera in the front, NFC support for Apple Pay and a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina LCD screen, compared to the two pricier models with OLED displays.
Apple also raves that its A12 Bionic chip is the “smartest and most powerful” smartphone chip, unlocking everything from new AR experiences to the potential for more games and photography capabilities in addition to delivering all-day battery life. he XR’s wide-angle lens camera has an all-new sensor that delivers Smart HDR and faster auto-focus as well as a 30 percent larger sensor with larger and deeper pixels. A new Depth Control also lets you adjust the depth of field in real-time preview as well as after capturing the image.
Check here for a list of the initial XR launch countries if you’re outside the US. Also, if you still haven’t done so, 9to5Mac recommends taking advantage of the iPhone Upgrade Program, where you can register for pre-approval and speed up the checkout process on Friday. Apple, for its part, recommends using its Apple Store app to complete pre-approvals.