Apple’s iPhone 11 is now almost two years old, and with theon the way, is it still a good idea to buy the older iPhone? It’s a fair question to consider, especially since the iPhone 11, which launched at $799, has since been discounted to $599 on Apple’s website. Beyond price and your , the decision could depend on what you need in a smartphone. You may even consider or an .
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For instance, do you mind using an iPhone that feels a bit dated? Or do you think saving several hundred dollars is more important than carrying the latest smartphone?— how important is that to you? If your current phone is on its deathbed, it makes sense to pony up the $599 for the iPhone 11 — or even the more expensive iPhone 12 — sooner rather than waiting for the next launch in the fall. But if you have some wiggle room, here are some questions to ask yourself. (For the purposes of this article, I’m going to assume that you are currently using an iPhone.)
5G connectivity: iPhone 11 doesn’t have 5G. But do you really need it right now?
One of the iPhone 11’s biggest missing features compared to the iPhone 12 — and presumably the— is 5G connectivity. The iPhone 11 is an LTE-only device, and if you don’t care for the next-gen wireless tech just yet (service is patchy in the US after all), then the iPhone 11 should suit you just fine. Remember that , and getting access to faster bands of 5G depends on where you live, so .
Display quality: You won’t get a 120Hz refresh rate on an iPhone 11 (or iPhone 12)
The iPhone 11 uses a crisp LCD screen that refreshes at 60 frames per second, or 60Hz. Apple traded up in the iPhone 12, equipping it with an OLED screen, though. OLEDs are typically more vibrant than their LCD counterparts, with richer contrast and inkier blacks. If you watch a lot of videos on your iPhone, and want a superior viewing experience, an OLED screen might make more sense for you. The iPhone 13 will likely boast an OLED panel too, though . The faster refresh rate will translate to smoother, snappier scrolling through apps and websites.
Software support: How long will the iPhone 11 get iOS software updates?
The 2015 iPhone 6S is currently the oldest supported iPhone that will get the next operating system, iOS 15, when the general release lands sometime in the fall. (The public beta ofis already here, and .) Based on that and some quick mental math, we can deduce that Apple plans to provide iPhone support for up to six years from launch. As a result, with the iPhone 11, unveiled in 2019, you can rest comfortably knowing that you can expect updates through 2025.
Durability and water resistance: How durable do you want your iPhone to be?
One of the iPhone 12’s big improvements is the material of its display. Apple calls it. Made by Corning, the ceramic shield glass covering the phone’s display is apparently harder than most metals. Indeed, we can confirm that the iPhone 12’s ceramic shield is tough. show it protected the hardware from drops as high as 9 feet. (CNET’s yielded similar results.) So if you’re a big klutz and are prone to slips and drops, springing for this current iPhone is a wise move (or just get a really nice ). Keep in mind, , either. It also survived and and earned a . You can read our for more details.
Price and budget: How much do you want to spend on an iPhone?
As I said earlier, Apple is selling the nearly two-year-old iPhone 11 for $200 less now than when it was first launched. The iPhone 12 starts at $829, but you can expect the price to drop in the fall or. Although it’s too early to know for sure about , CNET has made some educated guesses. Chances are it’ll come in at the same starting prices as iPhone 12. Depending on , getting a heavily discounted iPhone 12 may be a better option.