Update: Thanks to Chris in the comments – the XR iPhone also has this capability and costs much less at $749 for the base mode it will not be available for preorder until October 19
The new iPhone XS models were just introduced yesterday and improve on last year’s X model with some nice new features to the camera and carrier connectivity. They have also released the XS Max which puts an almost bezel-free 6.5″ display into a body roughly the same size as the old iPhone 7/8 Plus models. While many may be interested in these phones for many reasons, there is one big thing that may make them attractive to Google Fi fans for international travel.
The New iPhone XS Models Are Great For Google Fi and International Travel
First things first – the prices are very high for the new iPhone XS models! I cannot believe that a smartphone could cost as much as $1,449 but Apple apparently believes that such a price will work with many of their buyers – at least enough to make it worthwhile to create this high end model.
With that out of the way, let’s look at why the iPhone XS models are the best iPhones for Google Fi yet. If you do not know about Google Fi and how incredible it is for international travel, make sure you read some of these posts.
Why the iPhone XS Are Great for Google Fi for International Travel
The iPhone XS models are the first iPhones to come with dual-SIM capability. This allows customers to have more than one phone number tied to their phone without having to pop SIM cards out each time.
For international travel, this is especially important. Sure, you can just pull out your US SIM card and store it while you use a local SIM card, but that means that you won’t be able to receive any phone calls or messages on that number while out of the country and that you will need to keep track of that SIM while you are gone (not always easy).
For all regions outside of China, the iPhone XS models will come with one eSIM (like the Google Pixel 2 introduced on their phones last year) and one traditional SIM card. For the eSIM, you can activate that on your chosen carrier in your country (like in the US) and then pop a different physical SIM card in the slot for a second phone number and plan.
This makes the iPhone XS great for Google Fi. If you are a Google Fi customer, you can order a data-only SIM and activate that on the iPhone. When you are traveling internationally, this can be far cheaper than most regular carriers. At a flat $10 per 1GB (with a cap at $60 in a month), that will get you some high speed data in countries all over the world.
Making It Simple
So, if you buy the iPhone XS, regular or Max, you can put a Google Fi SIM card into the slot and use your American carrier while in the US and then switch it to the Google Fi SIM when you are traveling abroad. You would still be able to take phone numbers/text messages on the US carrier account but you could use the Google Fi data SIM for all your international data needs.
This means you never need to take your Google Fi SIM out and you can easily switch to it whenever you are traveling while ensuring your won’t miss calls on your regular phone number (those are expensive most of the time to answer as well but they could be important).
The new iPhone XS models are expensive, starting at $999 for the 5.8″ version at 64GB and going all the way up to $1,450 for the 6.5″ version at 512GB. However, if you are into the Apple ecosystem and you have been waiting for an easier way to use Google Fi on the go without switching SIMs around, you now have your choices!
These will go on sale tomorrow, September 14.