iPhone 8 Plus vs iPhone X
Which is the better iPhone on paper – the one that costs more? You might be surprised, writes Susie Ochs
For the first time, Apple has not just two sizes of its newest iPhone, but two distinctly different iPhones. There’s the iPhone 8 and the 8 Plus, which keep the same form-factor we know and love, Retina display, Home button, and all. And then there’s the new hotness, the bleeding-edge iPhone X, with an OLED display and a TrueDepth camera that unlocks the phone when you look at it.
You’ll notice that Apple didn’t call the iPhone X the ‘iPhone Pro’, to match the naming scheme of the iPad and MacBook lines. That may be because inside, the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 Plus are really pretty similar. They do have some key differences, however. So without further adieu, here’s a complete spec comparison between the iPhone X and the 8 Plus.
The iPhone 8 Plus is the bigger phone, even though the iPhone X’s display is actually larger when measured diagonally. It has a 5.5in screen, but it’s surrounded by a bezel with the FaceTime camera on the forehead and the traditional Home button on the chin.
On the other hand, the iPhone X has a 5.8in screen, but it’s in a more compact package with nearly no bezel, no Home button, and a little ‘notch’ for the front-facing TrueDepth camera system. iPhone 8 Plus: 158.4x78.1x7.5mm, 202g iPhone X: 143.6x70.9x7.7mm, 174g
The biggest difference between these iPhones is the display. The iPhone 8 Plus sports the same Retina display as it has in prior generations, an LCD that in the Plus size is full HD at 1920x1080.
Apple completely changed that with the iPhone X. It has an edge-to-edge OLED display, which gives it a much higher contrast ratio and support for HDR video. It’s got a higher resolution (2436x1125) and pixel density too – Apple is even calling it “Super Retina”.
iPhone 8 Plus: 5.5in, 1920x1080 LCD, 401ppi, 1300:1 contrast ratio
iPhone X: 5.8in, 2436x1125 OLED, HDR, 458ppi, 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio
Inside, the differences aren’t so stark. Both phones pack the same processor, Apple’s 64-bit A11 Bionic systemon-a-chip with an embedded M11 motion coprocessor. Both also have a dedicated neural engine to let AI processing happen on the device.
The A11 Bionic has a whopping six cores: Two for high-performance computing, and four efficiency cores for tasks that don’t require as much performance – or as much power. Apple says the A11 is 75 percent faster than the previous generation. But benchmarks between the two phones should be pretty similar – we’ll be testing that out shortly, so stay tuned.
iPhone 8 Plus: 6-core, 64-bit A11 Bionic, M11 motion coprocessor, neural engine iPhone X: 6-core, 64-bit A11 Bionic, M11 motion coprocessor, neural engine
If battery life is the most important to you, the iPhone 8 Plus with its physically bigger battery should eke out a little more life during Internet use and video streaming, although Apple estimates about the same battery life for talk time and audio playback.
Both of these iPhones support Qi wireless charging, and Apple will have its own charging pad next year, although plenty of Qi products exist already.
Both phones also support fast charging if you spring for one of Apple’s USB-C power adapters and a USB-C to Lightning cable. It’s speedy, though: Up to 50 percent charge in just half an hour.
And, of course, you can always charge up the oldfashioned way too: a standard Lightning cable and USB power brick are still included. iPhone 8 Plus: Up to 21 hours talk time, 13 hours Internet use, 14 hours video playback, 60 hours audio playback iPhone X: Up to 21 hours talk time, 12 hours Internet use, 13 hours video playback, 60 hours audio playback
The iPhone 8 Plus still has an edge over the regular 8 when it comes to camera features. But the iPhone X has
the same dual-lens camera on the back as the iPhone 8 Plus, and the same video recording features too.
The one little difference is that the iPhone X has ‘dual optical image stabilization’, meaning it works on both of the rear lenses, while the iPhone 8 Plus has just “optical image stabilization,” according to Apple.
iPhone 8 Plus: 12Mp wide-angle (f/1.8) and telephoto (f/2.8) cameras, optical image stabilization, optical zoom, 10x digital zoom, quad-LED True Tone flash with Slow Sync, Portrait mode, Portrait Lighting (beta at launch)
iPhone X: 12Mp wide-angle (f/1.8) and telephoto (f/2.8) cameras, dual optical image stabilization, optical zoom,
10x digital zoom, quad-LED True Tone flash with Slow Sync, Portrait mode, Portrait Lighting (beta at launch)
iPhone 8 Plus: 4K video recording at 24, 30, or 60 frames per second. 1080p video recording at 30 or 60 fps. Slo-mo recording in 1080p at 120 or 240 fps. Optical image stabilization, optical zoom, up to 6x digital zoom, time-lapse with stabilization.
iPhone X: 4K video recording at 24, 30, or 60 frames per second. 1080p video recording at 30 or 60 fps. Slo-mo recording in 1080p at 120 or 240 fps. Optical image stabilization, optical zoom, up to 6x digital zoom, time-lapse with stabilization.
The front-facing cameras on these two phones are so different, Apple gave them different names.
The iPhone 8 Plus has the traditional FaceTime camera, but it has been improved. With a f/2.2 aperture, it takes 7Mp stills and records 1080p video. Like the rear cameras, it captures wide-gamut colour when taking photos and Live Photos. There’s a Retina screen flash to help you get better lighting for your selfies.
The iPhone X has all of those same features, but its TrueDepth camera goes a lot further. Since you log in to your iPhone X with the new Face ID feature, the TrueDepth camera has special sensors that assist in this secure facial recognition. They include an infrared camera to see you in the dark, a proximity sensor, a flood illuminator, and a dot projector that helps make a 3D map of your face to make sure you’re not a photo.
All the tech in the TrueDepth camera is packed into the little ‘notch’ at the top of the iPhone X screen, and it helps this camera have extra features for taking selfies too. Namely, it supports the same Portrait mode and (beta) Portrait Lighting feature as the rear-facing camera. Plus, it has Animoji, a feature that animates an emoji (like a puppy, a unicorn, or yes, a talking pile of poo) with your voice as you speak. It’s a silly way to show off this much technology, but it’s another thing that will be fun to demo for friends after you show them how you can unlock your iPhone X by just looking at it. iPhone 8 Plus: FaceTime HD camera with 7Mp photos and 1080p video, f/2.2 aperture, Retina Flash
The iPhone X features a 5.8in Super Retina HD HDR display
The A11 Bionic chip and M11 coprocessor will enable smooth AR experiences in iOS 11
Apple’s own AirPower charging station is coming in 2018
On the iPhone X, the two cameras are stacked vertically, while on the iPhone 8 Plus they’re side by side
Phil Schiller describes the sensors and emitters in the TrueDepth camera on the iPhone X