Spending Time with the iPhone Xs Max and Apple Watch 4 — Should You Buy

6 min readSep 26, 2018


When I started MacSources six years ago it was because I was tired of seeing tech sites reporting on rumors more than apps and products that were real — right here right now. It seemed like so many amazing things had been overshadowed by clickbait and it aggravated me to no end. A prime example of this happened just this past Friday — iPhone Launch Day. Even before the trucks had finished delivering pre-orders that day, I saw the rumors starting about how next year’s iPhone might have touch ID under the screen and a move to USB-C. Stuff like that is just sad.

I have been playing with the new Apple iPhone Xs Max since launch morning and I can tell a huge speed bump with this newer model phone. I had an iPhone X and even though many people have been saying that you won’t miss out on anything if you don’t upgrade to the ‘s’ model, I disagree because everything seems to work much, much smoother on my Xs Max.

I also picked up an Apple Watch Series 4 this past weekend (on Launch Day +1) and I feel like Siri is faster and apps are loading like they always should have been. It’s what every Apple Watch should have been since they were released. I have been ecstatic about everything about the watch — especially the Gold Stainless Steel version.

The new color option and size on the iPhone is exactly what I needed and I can tell you that neither the color nor size is the main reason for this upgrade even though they are pretty slick.


The new Apple Watch has a different unboxing experience this time around. Both the band and the watch body are packaged together in a long origami-style box. The interior of the box is lined with Apple Watch images on the inside and the watch body comes wrapped in a felt-like sleeve. Robyn said that it’s super cute. The Apple Watch still comes with the standard Apple stickers and charging puck.

Unboxing the iPhone is nearly the same as it is any year. The iPhone Xs Max came in a standard iPhone box with an image of the product on the outside. Inside, you will find a small pamphlet, stickers, a small charging brick, USB-A to lightning cable, and the iPhone. Under “User Experience,” I will say my peace about the Apple charging brick but I have to say here that I don’t agree with all the hate being spread about the slower charging brick. One thing that that is missing this time around is the 3.5mm aux to Lightning adapter. Apple no longer includes this piece and if you want to use it, you will have to shell out $9 extra to order one. As someone who is strictly a wireless headphone type of person, I don’t mind this accessory being left out too much. I can, however, see how people would be ticked by the absence of the adapter.


I want to start off by discussing my opinion about the charging brick that Apple included with the iPhone Xs Max. It’s true that the phone can support fast charging, but I believe that Apple does not include a faster-charging brick because, in the past, they have said that using the fast chargers might decrease your battery’s overall lifecycle. I think that by providing the slower charging power brick, Apple is trying to help preserve the battery life of the new iPhones for its users. They made the iPhone’s compatible with a fast charge so that it was an option for users, but I think they believe the same way I do — that a quick charge is just going to cause stress to your battery and wear it down quickly over time.

The iPhone Xs looks the same as the X but the Xs Max is just that — Max. It has a massive screen. It’s an iPhone 8 Plus-sized body but with no bezels. It’s all screen. This is just wonderful and I love that. I have hated the bezels and Touch ID for years now. The speed I have found with the new iPhone has beaten my iPhone X from last year by far. Even with a clean install of iOS 12 on the iPhone X I still noticed the new iPhone Xs Max to have more pep.

Having the new color is nice — having the new screen size is nice but having the faster internet and having a more responsive device is the reason for buying the new iPhone and Apple Watch. This is not a “should you buy the new Apple devices” situation. It’s a “why haven’t you bought them yet” situation. Most carriers now have an iPhone upgrade program that makes the expense of getting a new phone not horrible.

You can’t hold onto the old as the new comes in. You just have to embrace it. My daughter did not want Face ID even with me telling her how much better it was than having Touch ID. She has so much trouble with Touch ID and guess what? Once she got her new iPhone Xs Max, she told me that she LOVES Face ID and would never want to go back to Touch ID. I feel the same way. I feel that it’s better than last year as everything feels faster.

The new Apple Watch is slick. It’s bigger without feeling like its gotten bigger. It’s thinner and the screen is packing so many pixels that when you stare into its square style screen you don’t feel like you are looking into a 1989 Nintendo Gameboy screen. I skipped the Series 3 Apple Watch and had been rocking a Series 2 Stainless Steel model for a while. So for me, the Series 4 Apple Watch was a big upgrade and I can tell such a speed bump that the thought of using my older Apple Watch gives me the shivers. It’s a great piece of tech and once Apple drops the ECG feature, it’s going to not only be life-saving for some — it’s going to be a must-have.


Am I only saying the new devices are perfect? Oh gosh no. The Apple Watch battery life is the same if not a bit better then last years but without being able to wear it all night you can’t fully track a person’s health. I think with Apple’s acquisition of Beddit this will change in the future. But, needless to say, should you upgrade the watch? If you have the money, do it. You will get a nice speed bump and some great new features If you don’t like it, take it back. This is not life or death. It’s a great device with an awesome update. The same goes for the new iPhone. It’s an “S” year so you are getting a much-needed speed increase. You are getting more from the device with iOS 12 and you are getting a massive screen that is just beyond beautiful.

I think all the people who are saying, “Don’t get the new Apple gear if you have last year’s model,” are honestly looking for anything — they are grasping at straws trying to find a reason besides the cost of the device on why not to pick them up. I did and I am happy with my purchases. I have no complaints that would trigger me not to want to place these orders all over again.

For more details, visit Apple.com


Originally published at macsources.com on September 26, 2018.




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