For the most part, the differences between the iPhone Xs and the iPhone XR are pretty well-known, where the iPhone XR uses an LCD screen versus the iPhone Xs which uses an OLED screen. It also has less RAM and uses a single-camera setup, but otherwise for the most part both phones are almost identical, at least on the surface.
However as it turns out there are more differences that could impact your decision on which phone you should buy. According to tests conducted by PC Mag, it turns out that in terms of cellular downloads, the iPhone Xs is twice as fast as the iPhone XR. This is thanks to the fact that the iPhone Xs has a 4×4 MIMO setup, whereas the iPhone XR has 2×2 MIMO setup, which essentially means the iPhone XR has less antennas.
Based on their tests in which they attempted to download a file over an LTE Band 4 connection, the iPhone Xs managed to top out at 400Mbps, whereas the iPhone XR managed 200Mbps. However we should point out that these are laboratory tests, meaning that in the real world, the discrepancies might not be as big and will vary depending on all kinds of things, such as how congested the network is, the source of the download, background data usage, reception, and more.
We should also point out that the 2×2 MIMO configuration was also used in 2017’s iPhone X, so if you’ve mostly been happy with the speeds you’ve been getting on your iPhones all this while, then maybe saving yourself a few hundred bucks might not be such a bad idea.