We’re all aware of the constraints that are associated with iPhones: their screens are often lower resolution than (and easily outsized by) competitor brands, processing speeds and battery life could be improved upon, and that’s without discussing the ever-deteriorating charging cables…
Yet statistically, the majority of our office are Team iPhone, with 70% of us being avid Apple users. Are we just sticking to what we’re used to, or is there actually something about the iPhone other than the brand or ‘status symbol’ that is keeping us loyal?
With yesterday’s announcement of the new iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X, as much as we’re obviously very fond of our current choices, we’re not sure how much longer we can justify paying top dollar for the ‘Apple Factor’ (as stunning as the new 10 year anniversary model is).
Unveiled on the exact same day as the iPhone X, the 8 is potentially the first phone in history that became obsolete on its ‘birthday’ – as from a technical standpoint, the iPhone X has already superseded the iPhone 8.
The display of the iPhone 8 (both the standard and the Plus models) have remained the same as the former 7 models, in both size and resolution. The 8 comes with glass front and glass back, with a metal frame in a choice of 3 colours: the standard silver and space grey, and a new shade of gold. So, what’s really new?
Apple have brought in a new A11 bionic chip which is a 6-core (2 performance and 4 high-efficiency) processor. They are claiming that the performance cores will run 25% faster than with the A10 processor, and the high-efficiency cores are supposed to run about 70% faster than the A10, meaning there should be less of a processing issue when running multiple applications. It has been coined the ‘most powerful’ smartphone chip yet. The 8 comes with 2GB RAM, while the X comes with 3GB. It promises improved processing and improved camera features at 12 megapixels with optical image stabilisation, enhanced portrait lighting effects, 1090p slow-mo at 240 frames per second and 4k video at 60 frames per second.
They’re also providing wireless charging (which answers many prayers made by long-time iPhone users despairing over fraying charging cables) and Bluetooth 5, whereas previous models came as standard with Bluetooth 4.2. The iPhone 8 promises to be water and dust resistant, with improved stereo speaker capability – apparently by about 25% compared to the iPhone 7.
We’ll start with the elephant in the room: the aesthetic. The X is the first iPhone with true edge-to-edge, FULL-screen display, and they have removed the home button. Yes, you heard right.. NO home button. Like the 8, the phone also has a glass front and glass back, but the frame is a stunning stainless steel.
Similar to the iPhone 8, the X also comes with the A11 Bionic processor and improved dual 12 megapixel camera system and all the features they offer, however the iPhone X also utilises the front camera with dot projector, using over 30,000 recognition points and infrared cameras to recognise your facial features, meaning you can unlock your phone at a glance. While this exciting and innovative this has the potential to open up security issues, as, in theory, if someone were to hold your phone in front of your face they could have instantaneous access. However, that is also assuming the technology works, unlike in the unfortunate demo held yesterday where the facial recognition failed to work…
Apple have also introduced improved AR capabilities with the A11 processor, so we can expect to see more people living life through their brand new 5.8 inch OLED displays in the near future. Another fun new concept that has been unveiled is the new Animoji feature – meaning you can now animate your emojis. That’s worth £1,000+, right?
While the phone looks incredibly slick to use and I’m sure I’ll be heading across to the Apple store in the not too distant future to test it out for myself in real life, if we look at the iPhone X on paper, it’s not too dissimilar to those already on the market, such as the Galaxy S8, which comes with the same size display, 12 megapixel rear camera, wireless charging and iris recognition.
Statistically, the Galaxy S8 does edge ahead of the iPhone X slightly, with a better resolution screen, 8 megapixel front camera (as opposed to the X’s 7 megapixels) and dual pixel sensor… and it has been on the market for 4 months already (at a far more affordable price of £689).