Good golly Molly, you can now buy an iPhone that costs more than a Mac mini, more than an iMac, more than a MacBook Pro. What hath Apple wrought? The new iPhone Xs Max, a 6.5-inch behemoth of a phone, weighs in at $1,449 with 512GB of storage and it fits in your pocket. Not every pocket, of course.
A Mac mini starts at $499, a MacBook Air a mere $999, a MacBook at $1,299, a MacBook Pro starts at just $1,299 and only when you bump the storage up to match the 512GB in iPhone Xs Max does the price reach $1,699.
What about iPad Pro?
A fully tricked out 12.9-inch iPad Pro with 512GB storage and cellular option is only $1,279. Add the SmartKeyboard and the most expensive iPad Pro model is still $1 less than a maxed out Max.
I want one.
What makes a device that can fit into your pocket worth more than desktop Macs and notebook Macs?
Apple has an ability to pack a tremendous amount of technology into a rather compact size. Take Apple Watch Series 4. For $399 you get a device far more powerful than Macs of yesteryear, fully 64-bit CPU, color display, Wi-Fi, with an option for LTE cellular for $100 with capabilities that start to put an iPhone on your wrist.
The most notable difference between all these devices is screen size. MacBook, MacBook Pro, and iPad Pro have screens around 13-inches. The entry-level iMac, priced less than iPhone Xs Max, starts at $1,299, $150 less.
How is that not crazy?
In my increasingly less relevant For What It’s Worth Department™, iPhones pack far more technology into a smaller space than iMacs or Mac notebooks, yet Watch manages much of the same types of components for much less.
For example, in a device that weighs just over six ounces, Apple manages to pack a high pixel density OLED display that shames and other display Apple makes at 458 ppi. It’s True Tone and Wide Color. The A12 Bionic chip in the new iPhones performs better than entry-level Mac notebooks. Also built-in are three cameras; the rear facing version is wide-angle at f/1.8 and telephoto at f/2.4.
Not only does it come with Face ID face recognition security, there’s also a barometer, a three-axis gyro, an accelerometer, a proximity sensor, and an ambient light sensor.
In some strange way all that technology for a mere $1,449 seems nuts since not one entry-level Mac or iPad Pro has the same capabilities. On the other hand, iPhone XR seems like something of a bargain starting at $749. Same camera. Same CPU/GPU. LCD display so good that it will be called virtually indistinguishable from perfect by testers.
What the iMac, MacBook, and MacBook Pro have going for them over iPhone Xs Max is screen real estate and a keyboard. Sure, $25 can get you a decent Bluetooth keyboard on Amazon, but a keyboard and large screen go hand-in-hand, and that’s the only weakness in iPhone Xs Max.
Now if it would only run Linux.