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How to Pre-Order the iPhone XR

If you've been holding out for the least expensive version of Apple's new iPhones, your patience has paid off. The $749 iPhone XR is available for pre-order right now before it reaches stores this Friday (Oct. 26).

Credit: Tom's Guide

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The iPhone XR debuted last month, alongside the iPhone XS and XS Max. But those two phones have been on sale since mid-September. Apple pushed iPhone XR pre-sales to Oct. 19, with the phone hitting stores a week later , reportedly so that it could ramp up production on the 6.1-inch handset.

The iPhone XR is Apple's attempt to offer a lower cost version of the iPhone X. While it sports the same extended display as the iPhone XS and XS Max, the iPhone XR uses an LCD panel instead of a more expensive OLED screen. There's also just a single rear camera on the XR. Those moves allow Apple to sell its new phone at a $250 discount from the iPhone XS.

MORE: iPhone XS vs iPhone XS Max vs iPhone XR

In addition to the lower price tag, the iPhone XR can claim a few other differences from the rest of the iPhone lineup. It comes in a wider variety of colors, offering a choice between black, white, blue coral and yellow as well as a Product Red variant. The 6.1-inch screen on the iPhone XR is also larger than the iPhone XS's 5.8-inch display though not nearly as large as the massive 6.5-inch screen on the iPhone XS Max.

The iPhone XR looks like it's worth the wait, according to our review of Apple's latest phone. We were impressed by the XR's performance as well as the photos its camera captured, and that LCD screen is pretty bright. But the biggest reason to get the iPhone XR may be its superior battery life, as this is the longest-lasting phone Apple has ever built, according to our tests.

If you've made the decision to go with Apple's more colorful iPhone, let's take a closer look at where you'll be able to get it now that pre-orders are underway. While the 64GB model costs $749, prices can vary from carrier to carrier if you opt to pay off your phone in monthly installments. Here's how your options break down.

Apple

Naturally, Apple will start taking orders on the iPhone XR this Friday, where you can get the 64GB, 128GB and 256GB configurations of the phone for $749, $799 and $899, respectively. You'll have to select from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon when you order from Apple — there's no unlocked option.

If you want to buy your iPhone XR in monthly installments, you can enroll in Apple's iPhone Upgrade Program. That means higher monthly payments than if you buy through a carrier, but you'll also be eligible to upgrade to a new iPhone after a year. You'll also get AppleCare+ coverage included in your monthly payment. You'll pay $37.41 per month for 24 months if you buy the 64GB iPhone XR this way. Monthly payments are $39.50 and $43.66 for the 128GB and 256GB models, respectively.

iPhone XR at AppleView Deal

You can save on your purchase by taking advantage of Apple's Giveback program, where you hand over your current phone for recycling. Apple will give you up to $525 in the form of an Apple Store Gift Card, though only a recent phone like the iPhone X will fetch that kind of return. Older models will give you a smaller rebate. (For example, my iPhone SE, still in good condition, is eligible for a $70 gift card through Apple Giveback.) Even if your old phone isn't eligible for a trade-in, Apple will still recycle it for free.

Some colors and capacities are now in short supply at Apple, with versions of the blue, coral, yellow and Product Red phones tied to T-Mobile not shipping for a few weeks.

AT&T

AT&T has already posted pricing details if you buy the iPhone XR though its AT&T Next installment program. You'll pay $25 a month over 30 months for the 64GB model. The payment rises to $26.67 for the 128GB XR and $30 for the 256GB model.

iPhone XR at AT&TView Deal

As of our last check on Friday morning (Oct. 19), AT&T has all colors and storage variants of the iPhone XR available, and they're all expected to ship on Oct. 26.

Sprint

As with other flagship phones, Sprint is pushing its Sprint Flex lease program with the iPhone XR, where you lease the phone via monthly payments for 18 months. After that, you either upgrade to a new phone or pay off the remaining balance to buy your iPhone outright.

Monthly payments on an 18-month iPhone XR lease will be $31.25 at Sprint. But Sprint will let you have the new phone for no monthly payment over 18 months if you trade-in an eligible phone. New and existing Sprint customers can get the iPhone XR for no monthly payment on a Sprint Flex plan if they turn in an iPhone 8 or later, Galaxy S9 and S9+, Galaxy S8 Active, Galaxy Note 8 or LG G7 ThinQ. You also can get the iPhone XR for free with the trade-in of a iPhone 7 or later, Galaxy S8 or later or any Pixel, but those phones require you to open a new line of service.

iPhone XR at SprintView Deal

As of Oct. 19, Sprint has all colors and storage options still in stock. While most models are expected to ship on Oct. 26, the Yellow variant could arrive anywhere between Oct. 26 and Nov. 2.

T-Mobile

T-Mobile has been quietly introducing 36-month payment plans to its offerings, and that's going to be the option for the iPhone XR. A 64GB iPhone XR will cost you $20.84 a month, the lowest monthly payment at any carrier. However, you'll be making that payment each month over the next three years.

iPhone XR at T-MobileView Deal

T-Mobile's offering you a way to lower that payment even further, with bill credits bringing your cost down to as little as $10 a month over 36 months if you exchange an eligible device.

Phones eligible for some sort of trade-in discount include the iPhone 5 and later, the Galaxy S4 and later, the Note 4 and later, the LG G4 or later, the LG V10 or later, any OnePlus phone, the Motorola Nexus 6, the Motorola Z2 Force, and any Google Pixel. It's unclear which phones qualify for the maximum discount, but we'd expect that you'll need to trade in a newer phone to bring down your iPhone XR payment to $10 a month.

As of this writing, T-Mobile has all colors and capacities available.

Verizon

The 64GB iPhone XR will cost you $31.24 a month over 24 months if you buy it on an installment plan at Verizon. Opt for the 128GB or 256GB versions of the phone, and your monthly payment becomes $33.33 or $37.49, respectively.

iPhone XR at VerizonView Deal

The carrier has a BOGO offer in place when you buy any of the new iPhones (that includes the XS and XS Max along with the XR). You'll get $750 toward a second iPhone XR in the form of monthly bill credits spread out over 24 months. You need to open a new line of service to qualify for this offer, though. Otherwise, Verizon's offering $50 off an Apple Watch and $100 off an iPad when you buy a new iPhone on a device payment plan; it's also knocking 25 percent off iPhone XR cases while that phone is available for pre-orders.

As with other carriers, Verizon currently has all colors and capacities of the iPhone XR in stock. However, while most models will ship by Oct. 26, the Yellow version is slated to arrive a bit later on Oct. 30.

Xfinity Mobile

Xfinity Mobile offers the iPhone XR starting at $749 upfront or 24 monthly payments of $31.25. The carrier will give customers a $200 gift card when they buy an iPhone XR and bring their number over to the Xfinity wireless service.

iPhone XR at XfinityView Deal

However, pickings are a bit slim as of this writing. Currently, Xfinity only has the Black (64GB), Coral (64GB/256GB), Red (64GB/256GB) and White (256GB) options available. All in-stock models are expected to ship on Oct. 26.

Walmart

Walmart's pre-order page isn't accepting offers just yet, but here's some incentive for your patience. The retailer will take $100 off the iPhone XR (all models) when you pre-order it via Walmart and activate it via Verizon, AT&T, or Sprint. The discount is applicable on pre-orders and in-store purchases.

iPhone XR at WalmartView Deal