With pre-orders for the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max now up, attention turns to the iPhone XR which is having to sit this week out due to reported supply issues.

Regardless of the reasons, when the iPhone XR does go on sale, buyers can look forward to some sweet colors to choose from as well as an iPhone XS-like experience at a fraction of the cost. In fact, in some ways, the iPhone XR is also pretty similar to the iPhone XS Max and iPhone 8 Plus – namely, it supports Plus-sized layouts.

Historically Apple has offered two experiences as far as iOS on an iPhone is concerned. If you plump for a Plus-sized model you get things like landscape home screens as well as differing in-app layout experiences.

Some apps will add an additional navigational column, like Messages, showing a list of message threads on one side of the display and message content on the other. That’s something the larger Plus displays can do, and the iPhone XR’s 6.1-inch display and the iPhone XS Max’s 6.5-inch displays are doing the same thing. At least, mostly.

While owners of an iPhone XR and iPhone XS Max will get the same Plus-sized experience that the iPhone 8 Plus has, one feature they will not possess is landscape home screens.

The reasons for this aren’t entirely clear, although our guess would be that it’s all down to Face ID and it’s inability to detect faces in that orientation. It’s a similar issue we expect iPad Pros to face when Face ID moves over to that platform too, so we’ll be interested to see how Apple addresses it there.

(Source: Twitter [1], [2])

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