I've used the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X — and the winner is clear

Hollis JohnsonThe iPhone 8 Plus, the iPhone X, and the iPhone 8.

Apple now sells three premium iPhone models for the first time in the product’s history.

So which should you buy? The iPhone 8? The 8 Plus? The X?

I’ve used all three models extensively. Here’s how they compare.


The phones are powered by the same processor, so you won’t notice a difference in speed or performance.

Apple

They also run iOS 11, the latest version of Apple’s iPhone operating system. (They will also run iOS 12 when that’s released this fall, likely in September.)

Justin Sullivan/GettyApple CEO Tim Cook showing off iOS 11.

They have wireless charging.

Hollis Johnson

But that’s where the similarities end. The iPhone X has a brand-new design with a larger screen.

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The design of the iPhone 8 hasn’t changed much since 2014.

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The iPhone X has a sharper screen that uses OLED technology. It’s one of the best smartphone displays ever made.

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Source: DisplayMate


The iPhone 8 has an LCD screen. It’s still good, but not as good as the iPhone X’s screen, which can display deeper blacks by turning off specific pixels.

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The iPhone X has Apple’s TrueDepth front-facing camera system. It’s used for facial recognition and enhanced augmented-reality features like Animoji and better Snapchat lenses.

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The TrueDepth camera can also take portrait selfies.

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The iPhone 8 has a standard front-facing camera. It doesn’t have Face ID and can’t take portrait selfies.

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The iPhone X doesn’t have a home button. You swipe up from the bottom of the screen.

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The iPhone 8 still has a home button with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor.

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The iPhone X’s dual-camera system takes excellent photos. Both lenses have optical image stabilisation, which means it takes better shots in low-light environments while minimising the “shaky cam” effect.

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The iPhone 8 has only one camera lens. The 8 Plus has two, but it doesn’t have dual optical image stabilisation like the iPhone X.

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The iPhone X is expensive. It starts at $US999 for the 64 GB model. The 256 GB model costs $US1,149.

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The iPhone 8 starts at $US699 for the 64 GB model. The iPhone 8 Plus starts at $US799 for that model.

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If you ask me, I think the iPhone X is much better than the iPhone 8.

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The iPhone X nails it across the board.

It has the perfect form factor, thanks to its large screen and minimized footprint. The iPhone 8’s design feels stale and outdated by comparison.

The iPhone X also represents exciting features that are likely to become standard in smartphones over the next several years, like facial recognition, super high-res displays, and advanced cameras.

The iPhone 8 is still a great phone, and you won’t be disappointed if you buy one. But if you want the best of the best, the iPhone X is the clear winner.


Here’s our full iPhone X review »

Steve Kovach contributed to an earlier version of this story.

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