As the iPhone 13 takes its place as the iPhone literally everyone should buy, the question still exists: Should I upgrade to the new iPhone, or should I keep my old one? To find out, I went back to a much older iPhone — the 2018 iPhone XR — for just over a week to see how well it would fare in 2021. Back when we reviewed it, we praised it as the “budget” iPhone to buy. This device was loaned to me by the folks at Backmarket, so it’s a refurb without all the dings and nicks that you’d have on an actively used phone.
A game changer with a legacy
The iPhone XR may be old now, but it’s an important iPhone that preceded the current iPhones like the iPhone 11, iPhone 12, and the most recent iPhone 13. It’s a phone that would be considered less than the “real” iPhone, but an iPhone nonetheless. Apple tried this sort of non-standard iPhone model with the SE and the iPhone 5C before. In many ways, the iPhone XR kicked off the standardization of Apple’s lineup, and it also became one of the bestselling iPhones in its day. After using it, it’s not a surprise.