If you’re thinking about buying Apple’s iPhone XR, make sure you pick the correct model. This process can be tricky and today we want to help you decide on the best iPhone XR storage option for your needs and your budget.
You might be tempted to go with the cheapest iPhone XR or the model with the most storage, but many of you should skip those and go with the 128GB model.
Before you commit to one model or another, there are some things you’ll want to consider and we’ll break everything down for you in this guide.
Table of Contents
iPhone XR Storage Options
The iPhone XR comes in a variety of colors with three storage options.
Instead of 64GB, 256GB, and 512GB configurations like the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, the iPhone XR comes in 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB formats. The 64GB model is the cheapest while the 256GB model is the most expensive.
The iPhone XR, like all iPhone models, doesn’t come with expandable storage via a microSD card. If you decide you need additional storage you’ll need to add it through Apple’s iCloud service or via Lightning drive.
Pay for Storage Now or Pay Later
64GB’s of storage isn’t enough space for a lot of people. If you plan to shoot 4K video, download content for travel, or play games, you’ll probably need additional storage space.
We’ve been using a 256GB iPhone 12 since launch and we’ve used more than 200GB of storage. We’re somewhat close to 256GB, but it’s well beyond the 64GB you get from Apple’s cheapest iPhone XR option.
Our internal storage space is taken up by our applications, photos, videos, podcasts, and other miscellaneous files. We went well over the 64GB threshold within a month of buying the phone.
Some of you might not come close to 64GB, but many others are going to go over that mark soon after you switch to your new device.
If that happens, you’ll either need to delete files to free up space or pay for additional storage via iCloud or an external drive. In the United States, iCloud pricing starts at $0.99/mo for 50GB and goes up to $9.99/mo for 2TB of space.
If you run out of space you might have to resort to streaming movies and music and that could lead to data overage charges if you aren’t careful.
Who Should Buy the 64GB iPhone XR
Again, the 64GB iPhone XR is the cheapest option available. You’re going to save on the upfront cost of the phone and many of you will be perfectly fine with 64GB of space. You should buy the 64GB iPhone XR if you:
- Stream most of your movies and music.
- Don’t plan to record a lot of 4K videos.
- Plan to store your photos in iCloud Photo Library or locally on a computer.
- Don’t come anywhere close to using 64GB of storage on your current iPhone.
Who Should Buy the 128GB iPhone XR
The 64GB option is worth considering, but you might want the peace of mind that comes with the larger 128GB iPhone XR.
It’s comforting to know you can shoot a ton of video and download plenty of apps without having to worry about hitting the storage threshold.
You should buy the 128GB iPhone XR if you:
- Store some of your movies and music locally.
- Prefer to keep your photos stored locally.
- Plan to shoot some 4K video.
- Don’t come close to using 64GB of space on your current iPhone.
- Can’t stand having to constantly manage the data on your phone.
Who Should Buy the 256GB iPhone XR
Most of you should be fine with 64GB or 128GB, but power users will want to spend the extra money and go with the largest storage size. You should buy the 256GB iPhone XR if you:
- Plan to shoot a ton of 4K video.
- Are a photo buff who doesn’t want to use iCloud.
- Someone who travels often and wants to store everything locally.
How to Check Your Storage
If you’re currently using an iPhone and are struggling with this decision, do yourself a favor and check out how you’re currently utilizing your device’s storage.
Here’s how to do this:
- Tap on your Settings app.
- Tap on General.
- Tap on iPhone Storage.
Once you’re on this screen you can see how much storage you’re currently using on your iPhone. You can also see what’s taking up the most storage on your device.
If you’re already over 64GB or coming close, you’ll probably want to go with the 128GB or 256GB option. If you’re barely using your storage, you probably don’t need to spend the extra cash.
If you plan to use the iPhone XR for a year before upgrading to a new device, there’s less pressure to go with a bigger storage size. You can make do and upgrade to a device with a larger storage capacity in twelve months.
If you don’t plan to upgrade for two years or more, the 128GB/256GB models are the safest bet for most people. If you go with one of these options, you should be able to avoid spending additional money on storage.
Install iOS 16.7.2 for Better Security
If security is important to you, think about installing Apple's iOS 16.7.2 update on your iPhone right away.
iOS 16.7.2 isn't a huge upgrade, but the update does a number of security patches on board. These on their own should be enough to get you to install the software in the near future.
As for older updates, iOS 16.7.2 carried two important security enhancements including one that addressed a kernel vulnerability. You can learn more about the pair over on Apple's website.
iOS 16.7 had three security patches on board and you can learn more about them right here.
iOS 16.6.1 brought two important security patches to iPhone. If you're interested in what they patch up, here's Apple's guide.
The iOS 16.6 update delivered 16 security patches. For more information about the changes, check out Apple's rundown.
iOS 16.5.1 brought two security patches to iPhone users If you want to learn more, head on over to Apple's website.
The company's iOS Security Response 16.5.1 (c) update also included a security update and you can learn more about it right here.
iOS 16.5 brought a ton of security patches to the iPhone. You can find out more about them over on Apple's security site.
iOS 16.4.1 included two security upgrades . You can learn more about the pair right here.
Apple's iOS 16.4 update had a substantial number of patches on board. You can read about them in detail over on Apple's security site.
The iOS 16.3.1 update had three security patches on board including one for an actively exploited vulnerability. For more on the security contents of iOS 16.3.1, check out Apple's security page.
iOS 16.3 brought 10+ new security patches with it and you can learn more about all of those right here.
In addition, the software came with support for physical security keys for Apple ID. These will beef up your account security by requiring a physical security key as part of the two factor authentication sign in process. Learn more about the change right here.
If you skipped iOS 16.2, you'll get its changes with iOS 16.7.2. iOS 16.2 brought a ton of important security patches with it and you can dig into the details on Apple's security site.
The update also brought end-to-end encryption to iCloud, iMessage, iPhone backups, Notes, Photos, and more. If you want to learn more about it, head over to Apple's guide.
If you decided to missed iOS 16.1.2, you'll get its solitary security patch with your upgrade. Learn more about it right here.
If you skipped iOS 16.1.1, you'll get its security patches when you upgrade. You can learn more about them right here.
If you missed the iOS 16.1 update, it brought 19 security patches to the iPhone and you can learn about the particulars of those over on Apple's website.
If you failed to download iOS 16.0.3, it had one security patch on board, a fix for a potential exploit within the Mail app. For more about the fix, check out Apple's security site.
If you're still running iOS 15 your iPhone, you'll get a bunch of other patches when you upgrade.
iOS 16.0 brought a ton of security patches to the iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's security website.
In addition to those patches, iOS 16 brings some additional enhancements to privacy and security including Safety Check which, according to Apple, will help "people in domestic or intimate partner violence situations review and reset the access they’ve granted others."
The feature also resets system privacy permissions for apps and restricts Messages and FaceTime to the device on hand.
Apple's also made some improvements to Passkeys in Safari. iOS 16 brings a brand new sign-in method that's end-to-end encrypted and safe from phishing and data leaks.
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