The iPhone 11 Pro Max was the best that Apple could cram into a smartphone in 2019 – the high-end screen, powerful speakers, upgraded processor all support the huge upgrades to the camera. However, this phone is really for the Apple fan or someone that really needs that extra lens or a touch more battery life – the iPhone 11 feels like it offers better value.
The iPhone 11 Pro Max was the largest and most powerful phone Apple’s ever created, taking the very best of its technology and combining it with an upgraded design that includes a new matte back, three cameras designed to rival the best from Samsung, Google and Huawei, and an enhanced battery for greater endurance.
The iPhone 11 Pro Max was, until the iPhone 12 Pro Max came along, leading the iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro in Apple’s march to the future. The new phone has some improved specs and a tweaked design from the iPhone 11 Pro Max, but 5G aside it’s only an annual update and not a revolution.
Digging deeper into the iPhone 11 Pro Max camera, we’re impressed most with the Night mode: the iPhone 11 Pro Max is capable of turning night almost into day, but doing so while preserving plenty of detail.
We found the newly-added ultra-wide camera to be handy when you want to squeeze in more of a scene (although we didn’t find we needed it that often) and for improving the background defocus effects… although it still wasn’t perfect in our testing.
The design of the iPhone 11 Pro Max will be familiar to most, with the same design language as the previous two models (the iPhone X and iPhone XS), although the matte back feels nice in the hand. The ‘Max’ size won’t appeal to all, but it does facilitate the large and impressive 6.5-inch OLED display, which offers a brilliant cinematic experience, both visually and through the upgraded stereo speakers.
The camera bump on the rear of the phone feels a little sharp and takes up a lot of space, although if you’re right-handed it stays out of the way when you’re going about your daily tasks.
Apple promises that the iPhone 11 Pro Max’s battery will last five hours longer than the XS Max from the previous year, and that claim is borne out in our tests – it particularly excelled when playing back HDR video on the phone, and the 20-hour battery life for multimedia seems accurate.
In day-to-day use we found that this is just about a 24-hour smartphone (assuming you sleep for a portion of that time), and the fast charger that (finally) comes in the box gives you around 20% in 15 minutes, and a full charge in just an hour and a half.
With iOS 13 on board – and now an update to iOS 14 – the Pro Max feels more refined than previous models, and tweaks to the accuracy and range of Face ID make it simpler to use every day, with things like opening a notification when the phone is placed flat on a desk made much easier.
The raw performance of the iPhone 11 Pro Max also impressed, although we did encounter some slowdown in the camera app; however, if you’re looking to edit video on the go (and don’t forget this phone can shoot 4K at 60 frames per second, and do it well) then you’ll enjoy the extra grunt on offer.
Overall, the iPhone 11 Pro Max is a real step forward, and the most advanced iPhone yet. However, when thinking about what’s truly new here, we weren’t able to single out much beyond the improved camera (especially Night mode) and the slightly upgraded cinematic experience.
If you want to save some money, we’d suggest checking out the iPhone 11 – while we constantly found little nuggets of impressive performance throughout our testing of the 11 Pro Max, we couldn’t shake the feeling that this is really only a phone for the Apple fan who wants the best of everything, with no compromises. And for those fans, there’s now the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
iPhone 11 Pro Max Specs :
|NETWORK||Technology||GSM / CDMA / HSPA / EVDO / LTE|
|2G bands||GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 – SIM 1 & SIM 2 (dual-SIM) – for China|
|CDMA 800 / 1900|
|3G bands||HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100|
|4G bands||1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 66 – A2218|
|1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 29, 30, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 66, 71 – A2161, A2220|
|Speed||HSPA 42.2/5.76 Mbps, LTE-A 1.6 Gbps DL, EV-DO Rev.A 3.1 Mbps|
|LAUNCH||Announced||2019, September 10|
|Status||Available. Released 2019, September 20|
|BODY||Dimensions||158 x 77.8 x 8.1 mm (6.22 x 3.06 x 0.32 in)|
|Weight||226 g (7.97 oz)|
|Build||Glass front (Gorilla Glass), glass back (Gorilla Glass), stainless steel frame|
|SIM||Single SIM (Nano-SIM and/or eSIM) or Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by) – for China|
|IP68 dust/water resistant (up to 4m for 30 mins)
Apple Pay (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX certified)
|DISPLAY||Type||Super Retina XDR OLED, HDR10, 800 nits (typ), 1200 nits (peak)|
|Size||6.5 inches, 102.9 cm2 (~83.7% screen-to-body ratio)|
|Resolution||1242 x 2688 pixels, 19.5:9 ratio (~458 ppi density)|
|Protection||Scratch-resistant glass, oleophobic coating|
Wide color gamut
|PLATFORM||OS||iOS 13, upgradable to iOS 14.4|
|Chipset||Apple A13 Bionic (7 nm+)|
|CPU||Hexa-core (2×2.65 GHz Lightning + 4×1.8 GHz Thunder)|
|GPU||Apple GPU (4-core graphics)|
|Internal||64GB 4GB RAM, 256GB 4GB RAM, 512GB 4GB RAM|
|MAIN CAMERA||Triple||12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/2.55″, 1.4µm, dual pixel PDAF, OIS
12 MP, f/2.0, 52mm (telephoto), 1/3.4″, 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 2x optical zoom
12 MP, f/2.4, 120˚, 13mm (ultrawide), 1/3.6″
|Features||Dual-LED dual-tone flash, HDR (photo/panorama)|
|Video||4K@24/30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/120/240fps, HDR, stereo sound rec.|
|SELFIE CAMERA||Dual||12 MP, f/2.2, 23mm (wide), 1/3.6″
SL 3D, (depth/biometrics sensor)
|Video||4K@24/30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/120fps, gyro-EIS|
|SOUND||Loudspeaker||Yes, with stereo speakers|
|COMMS||WLAN||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6, dual-band, hotspot|
|Bluetooth||5.0, A2DP, LE|
|GPS||Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, QZSS|
|USB||Lightning, USB 2.0|
|FEATURES||Sensors||Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer|
|Siri natural language commands and dictation
Ultra Wideband (UWB) support
|BATTERY||Type||Li-Ion 3969 mAh, non-removable (15.04 Wh)|
|Charging||Fast charging 18W, 50% in 30 min (advertised)
USB Power Delivery 2.0
Qi wireless charging
|Stand-by||Up to 20 h (multimedia)|
|Music play||Up to 80 h|
|MISC||Colors||Matte Space Gray, Matte Silver, Matte Gold, Matte Midnight Green|
|Models||A2218, A2161, A2220|
|SAR||1.16 W/kg (head) 1.17 W/kg (body)|
|SAR EU||0.95 W/kg (head) 0.99 W/kg (body)|
|Price||$ 709.00 / € 909.99 / £ 589.95 / ₹ 90,900|
|TESTS||Performance||AnTuTu: 459713 (v7), 536883 (v8)
GeekBench: 13870 (v4.4), 3503 (v5.1)
GFXBench: 57fps (ES 3.1 onscreen)
|Display||Contrast ratio: Infinite (nominal)|
|Camera||Photo / Video|
|Loudspeaker||-25.6 LUFS (Very good)|
|Audio quality||Noise -94.3dB / Crosstalk -81.5dB|
Endurance rating 102h
The iPhone 11 Pro Max was announced on September 10, 2019 and it came out on September 20 in the US, UK, Australia and a variety of other markets around the globe.
It’s no longer sold directly by Apple now that the iPhone 12 range is out, but it’s still fairly easy to get from third-party stores. That said, the price might be a sticking point as it was the most expensive iPhone out there at launch and it’s still among the priciest now.
Yes, it rivals the cost of some MacBooks in certain territories, but that’s not really a fair comparison – these are different products with different specifications, designed to do very different things. However, it does illustrate how expensive the iPhone 11 Pro Max is.
The iPhone 11 Pro Max price starts at $1,099 / £1,149 / AU$1,899 for the 64GB model. Storage capacity then jumps to 256GB, with an asking price of $1,249 / £1,299 / AU$2,149.
It then goes all the way up to $1,449 / £1,499 / AU$2,499 for the most expensive 512GB model – so if you’re not rich enough to swim regularly in a pool of money, it’s probably time to get saving.
Having said that, many stores are now selling it for less. For example, at the time of writing we can see the iPhone 11 Pro Max on sale for £1,029 / AU1,699 (with most US deals being limited to contracts).
You’ll have noticed the difference in cost between the UK and US – where previously Apple has been matching the dollars and pounds price tag for its iPhones, this time it’s a little different.
In the United States, the standard price of the iPhone 11 Pro Max is the same as that of the phone it succeeds, the iPhone XS Max, but it’s risen in the United Kingdom, which is certainly going to irk some buyers there.
The iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max aren’t that worthy upgrades over the XS and XS Max. Just because Apple added an extra rear camera, it doesn’t mean you need to jump this year. It’s a good idea to wait for the 11S models, but who are we to stand in the way of the Night Mode and slofies?
the new iPhone 11 Pro duo is expectedly great and even pulled off a couple of surprise moves here and there. We wished for a lot of things with the new generation and we got almost all of them. Sure, the prices are steep, and they skyrocket if you go for more gigabytes, but that’s Apple and many will convince you the premium warranty, seamless and hassle-free experience, variety of apps, blazing performance, great camera skills and about 5 years of major updates are worth every penny. Well, we are not going to deny it.
- Tougher and waterproof design, matte back
- The XDR screens are the brightest OLEDs around, excellent contrast and color accuracy
- Apple A13 Bionic is the fastest smartphone chip on the planet
- Excellent battery life, fast charging
- Stereo speakers with class-leading quality
- iOS provides smooth user experience
- The main and zoom cameras produce very good photos, Night Mode works as advertised
- Amazing video quality and stabilization across the board
- Excellent selfie photo and video quality
- The calibration between the three snappers is excellent and allows for Crop Outside Frame, simultaneous video capturing, and smooth switching during recording
- The notch is still enormous
- A high-refresh rate screen would have made it more competitive.
- No 3.5mm jack or audio adapter in the box, limited NFC usage
- The file management and transfer in iOS isn’t that easy to understand
- The camera photos come out bland
- Ultra-wide camera lacks autofocus and Night Mode
- Telephoto cam is 2x while competitors are already at 3x and even 5x.
- The camera options MUST BE INSIDE the Camera app, c’mon Apple!
- Expensive. Very Expensive.