iPhone X vs. iPhone 8 and 8 Plus – Which One Should You Buy?
It’s been 10 years since the iPhone was first unveiled by Apple, revolutionizing mobile phones and influencing design for years to come. While some might argue that iPhones are no more the industry benchmark setting devices they were, there’s no denying the fact that they’re still class leading smartphones with a huge fanbase and fantastic app ecosystem. Apart from the fact that we get a full numbered release this year in the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, Apple also commemorated the 10 year anniversary of their flagship smartphone with the release of the iPhone X (pronounced iPhone ‘Ten’), a brand new super premium smartphone that is quite the departure from previous iPhones. So if you’re an iPhone user looking to upgrade or an Android user looking to jump ship, there’s now 3 options to choose from, which one should you get?
Also Read: iPhone 7 vs. iPhone 6 – What’s The Difference?
iPhone X, 8 and 8 Plus – All The Changes
Design, Body, Storage and Colors
While the iPhone X is the most radically different of the new triumvirate of iPhones, the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are similar to previous iterations, and evolutions of the classic iPhone design. What’s different this time around though, is that Apple has gone with a glass front and back on both the 8’s, in contrast to the aluminum seen on the previous generation iPhones. Apple has also finally adopted the Qi Wireless Charging standard, which is in part made possible by the switch from aluminum to glass back. IP67 certification is back as well, which means that all the 3 phones are water resistant up to 1 meter and 30 minutes. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are only going to be available in 64GB and 256GB variants though, and in 3 colors – Gold, Silver and Space Gray. We’re guessing more color variants will be introduced later on in the life cycle.
The biggest change however, is the new Apple A11 Bionic SoC, which powers all 3 new phones. This new hexa-core CPU comes with 2 high-powered cores (‘Monsoon’) and 4 power-saving cores (‘Mistral’). Apple claims that the high-powered cores are 100% faster than the ones on the A10 and the power-saving cores are 70% faster than their last generation counterparts. Benchmarks also indicate the same, the A11 performs extremely well and shows a significant advantage over its closest Android competition, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. Combined with iOS 11, we’re sure that performance won’t be an issue on either of the phones. The iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X come with 3GB of LPDDR4 RAM, while the iPhone 8 comes with 2GB of LPDDR4 RAM.
Display, Camera and Battery
Both the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have pretty much the same displays as the previous generation iPhones (4.7 inch,1334 x 750-pixel resolution, 326 PPI for the 8 and 5.5 inch, 1920 x 1080-pixel resolution, 401 PPI for the 8 Plus). What’s new, however, is that both of them are now True Tone displays, which in simple terms adjust white light according to the surroundings. This was first introduced in the iPad Pro, and also makes an appearance on the iPhone X display.
The camera units are also very similar from last year, with the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X getting dual 12MP sensors at the back and a 7MP front facing unit. The iPhone 8, meanwhile, gets a single 12MP camera at the rear and the same front facing camera. All phones now will be able to capture 2K video at 24, 30 and 60 FPS, and 1080P video at 30, 60, 120 and 240 FPS. The quad LED flash and optical image stabilization make a return as well.
In true Apple fashion, the exact battery capacity of the phones weren’t revealed in the presentation, but intrepid tech reporters have found out the the iPhone 8 houses a 1820 mAh battery and the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X come with a 2675 mAh battery. Battery life, however, is claimed to be the same as last year, with the smaller of the units claiming 14h talktime and 40h standby, while the larger phones are reporting 21h talktime and 60h standby.
iPhone X – What’s New?
The start of the show, however, was the new iPhone X. Featuring a mostly bezel-less display and a couple of new tricks, the iPhone X is Apple’s most premium offering and will retail for higher than even the iPhone 8 Plus. The biggest new change, obviously, is the departure from the classic iPhone design. Apple has ditched the Home button for a complete edge to edge screen, which means that TouchID is gone, that’s now only available on the 8 and 8 Plus. Now featuring the highest ever screen-to-body ration of an iPhone, the X also ditches the LCD unit for an OLED one, which producers richer and more vivid colors. Interestingly made by Samsung, the OLED unit is also Dolby Vision and HDR 10 compatible. Apple has bumped up the resolution to 2436 x 1125 pixels for the 5.8 inch unit, which means that the pixel density is also higher at 458 PPI. It’s still not close to Android flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S8 though, which comes with a 570 PPI display. The interesting design choice of having only a small cutout on the center of the top part of the screen for the sensors and such could be an issue however, and iPhone users will find it difficult to watch anything truly fullscreen.
In terms of internals, the iPhone X basically features the same SoC and amount of RAM as the iPhone 8 Plus, as well as shares the camera and battery. On the front side though, it comes with a new depth sensing camera that basically scans your face, for the new unlock mechanism, FaceID. The new technology, as claimed by Apple, apparently stores a 3D model of your face on the phone, and can’t be fooled by a photo of you. It’s also supposedly smart enough to understand it’s still you despite hats, facial hair, glasses or anything similar. Privacy concerns aside, Apple seems to have gone all in on this technology, because there’s no more TouchID to unlock the phone anyway. The new depth sensing camera also adds a fun new Animoji feature, which lets the iPhone X scan your face to create customized animated emojis.
Since there’s no home button, you’ll have to swipe up from the bottom of the phone to unlock it, and a couple of gestures here and there are reworked to accommodate for the different screen and layout. While all 3 phones come with iOS 11, the iPhone X will ship with iOS 11.1, a slightly tweaked version that’s customized for the iPhone X.
Which One Should You Buy? – Pricing, Release and Conclusion
In any other year, the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus would probably just be called the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus. The only difference between them and the previous phones are wireless charging and the new A11 chip; which, for the average user, won’t make too much of a difference. Previous iPhone users, however, might find the new iPhones worth it, specially if moving from the iPhone 5S or iPhone 6. Now, the iPhone X is definitely a great new smartphone, but the steep pricing is definitely a concern. You’re essentially shelling out about 200 USD more for a bezel-less screen and better front camera, over the iPhone 8 Plus, which itself isn’t affordable to begin with. Our recommendation? If you’re coming from an older iPhone than the 6 and want to upgrade, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are great buys. The iPhone X is a great phone, but the high price means that you really have to be an enthusiast to shell out that kind of money. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will be available from September 22 in US and Canada, and the iPhone X will be available from November 3, with preoders starting from October 27.
iPhone 8 (64 GB) – $699
iPhone 8 (256 GB) – $849
iPhone 8 Plus (64 GB) – $799
iPhone 8 Plus (256 GB) – $949
iPhone X (64 GB) – $999
iPhone X (256 GB) – $1149