iPhone 7 vs iPhone 8? Psh, newer should be better. No doubt about it! But if you are still agonizing whether to choose an iPhone 7 or iPhone 8, we got you covered. Here’s a list of differences that can help you decided what the right iPhone is for you.
In order to help you decide on your purchase, we listed 16 differences between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8. As a side bonus we will also talk about the camera between the two and conduct a speed test. In our speed test, we will do the same test we did in the iOS 11 comparison between iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone 7 before. If you’re short on time, here’s a quick comparison table between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.
Get the iPhone 7 if you are on a budget. For the average user, this will be a good choice.
The iPhone 8 offers better video capture (but who captures video in 4k?). Bluetooth 5.0 is going to be important for smart home users.
- Five Colours
- Aluminum Back
- Less Storage Space
- Normal Display
- A10 Chip
- Normal True-tone flash
- 4K video @ 30fps
- 720p 240fps Slo-mo
- Bluetooth 4.2
- 2 Satellite Systems Receiver
- Not HDR Movie Compatible
- Normal Charging
- No Wireless Charging
- Three Colours
- Glass Back
- More Base Storage
- True Tone Display
- A11 Chip w/ Neural Engine
- True-tone flash w/Slow-Sync
- 4K video @ 24/30/60 fps
- 1080p 240fps Slo-mo
- Bluetooth 5.0
- 4 Satellite Systems Receiver
- Dolby Vision/HDR10 compatible
- Fast Charging
- Wireless Charging
So letʼs start with the differences. These are in no particular order but we personally think difference #7,#8,#9 and #13 would justify the $150 dollar price difference between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.
Difference #1 – Colors
The iPhone 8 (at release) has 3 colors. The iPhone 7 has 5. If accessorizing with different colours is a big deal for you, get the iPhone 7.
Difference #2 – The iPhone 8 exterior is glass and the iPhone 7 is aluminum.
Weʼve broken enough iPhoneʼs in our line of work to know that the aluminum back is going to be tougher. We have tested how well an iPhone 8 with glass back holds up against rocks, concrete and kitchen knife and found out that it is also inferior to the aluminum back of iPhone 7’s. If you want to find out more on how that test went, click here.
Looking beyond the durability aspect, the glass on the iPhone 8 is going to offer better handling than the iPhone 7.
Difference #3 – You get more storage space
The base storage for the iPhone 8 is 64 GB. The iPhone 7 is 32 GB. This is a nice deal considering that the iPhone 8 costs an extra $150 dollars.
The extra size is also going to be important for those leaning towards the iPhone 8 because of the updated specs on the camera.
Difference #4 – True Tone Display
This technology can be found on the iPad Pro 9.7. This feature basically changes the color of the screen to “real” colors based on the color of lighting of your surroundings.
This sounds great on paper but we personally donʼt notice the color of the screen changing when we’re on our iPad Pro. From our perspective, this isnʼt going to be a difference maker for the average person.
Difference #5 – Neural Engine
With the iPhone 8, Apple added an A11 chip with a neural engine which apparently houses Ai algorithms. This sounds pretty cool letʼs be honest, We think itʼs going to take a few more years before developers fully utilize that feature.
From our understanding, the Neural Engine is going to be important for the iPhone X with Face ID but on the iPhone 8? Weʼre not terribly sure itʼs going to be a difference maker between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.
We initially thought that this feature was going to be a difference maker but we donʼt think itʼs going to be terribly useful on a day to day basis.
Difference #6 – True Tone flash with Slow Sync
Weʼll be honest with you, we have no idea what this is. We tried to figure out during our iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 camera test and we couldnʼt find a moment where it was “AHA, Slow Sync”.
On paper, this feature will use a slow shutter speed along with a short strobe to create a more uniformly-lit photo. During our usage, the “Slow Sync” would actually result in a very quick photo being taken. On the iPhone 7 in low light situation, the flash would go on for a noticeable amount of time before the photo gets taken. On the iPhone 8, it happens much quicker.
We’re guessing at the end of the day that youʼre going to get better low light, flash photographs.
Difference #7 – 4k video at 24 fps and 60 fps on top of 30
The next two differences are going to be the big ones in our opinion. The iPhone 8 will now capture 4k footage in 24fps, 30fps and 60 fps. The iPhone 7 only captures it in 30 fps.
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Better frame rates, better video quality. Your 4K video is going to look a little smoother 60 fps and more “cinematic” with 24 fps.
At Mobile Reviews Eh, we shoot everything at 30 fps or more so we wonʼt utilize the 24fps feature effectively. But with the 60 fps, weʼll be able to do a bit more.
You might be thinking that the 60fps footage is going to chew up the storage space on your iPhone 7 or 8 but remember, iOS 11 now compresses your images and videos in new formats which will save you about 40% in size. To see how much of a difference between the photo and video sizes between iOS 10 and iOS 11 click here.
Difference #8 – 1080p, 240 fps slow-motion
Weʼre quite excited at this incremental update. Mostly because we like to film all our iPhone drops in slow-motion right now but itʼs captured at 720p (which is what the iPhone 7 shoots at). This means clearer slow-motion drop test footage for you!
Difference #9 – Bluetooth 5.0
The iPhone 7 has Bluetooth 4.2. The iPhone 8 has Bluetooth 5.0. This difference is a big deal and is one of the reasons why we say that you’re going to “future proof” your iPhone a bit if you go with iPhone 8.
Bluetooth 5.0 has a range of 260ft whereas Bluetooth 4.2 only has 30 ft. This might not be an upgrade to most of you, but we have been reviewing smart home gadgets on our other website and we find the 30 ft distance not enough to do some certain task like opening a backdoor from the front. With a 260 ft range, weʼd be able to connect to devices in our garage from our front door which is awesome!
Another upgrade worth mentioning is the fact that youʼll be able to pair two sets of wireless headphones to an iPhone which means you donʼt have to share your groudy ears buds with your bestie anymore.
The last thing weʼll say about the Bluetooth 5.0 is that it is a newer standard which means it might take a year or so for gadgets to catch up.
Difference #10 – Better Navigation
The iPhone 7 can calculate your position from GPS and Glonass. The iPhone 8 will be able to use QNSS and Galileo on top of GPS and Glonass. This just means the iPhone 8 will have more options to get your position.
If youʼre wondering, the GPS is the US version of navigational satellites, Glonass is the Russian version, Galileo is the European version and the QNSS is the Japanese version.
In general, the more satellites your iPhone can see, the better your position is going to be. Another benefit of this is if one of the system goes offline for whatever political reason, youʼll still be able to navigate with the other satellites.
Difference #11 – NFC with reader mode This is a hidden gem that we think savvy marketing companies may take advantage of, The iPhone 7 has NFC capabilities (i.e Apple Pay) but it couldnʼt read RFID chips. With the iPhone 8, Apple has included a reader which letʼs you read one. This might not be useful on a day-to-day basis but we’re excited nonetheless to use this feature.
We initially thought the iPhone 8 had an updated NFC chip. We did our research and then realized that Apple made a mistake on their website.
As of September 29, 2017 Apple has updated their website and listed that iPhone 7 will also have an NFC with a reader mode.
Difference #12 – Dolby Vision and HDR10
Have you heard of the HDR wars? We havenʼt either. Apparently Dolby Vision and HDR10 are formats that companies are trying to push as the defacto standard for the HDR movies. This seems like a throwback to the Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD wars of the 2000ʼs.
Should we care who wins? Nope. Because Apple has included the ability to play both formats on the iPhone 8. Another difference that “future proofs” your iPhone 8 purchase.
Difference #13 – Fast Charging
This feature has been a staple for most Android phones for the last few years so weʼre glad that itʼs finally made it to the iPhone (not that we had problems with the battery on the iPhone before).
Weʼll be honest with you, the only time we’re grateful for fast charging on our Android devices is when we’re in need of a third camera for a video and our Android device is dead because we donʼt use them much.
The fast charging will allow you to charge 50% of your battery in 30 mins which is handy when youʼre in a hurry. This is going to be more important for the iPhone 8 than the 8 Plus because of the smaller battery size on the 8.
Difference #14 – The flash is fully covered
By glass. Sure itʼs not big deal but now you know.
Difference #15 – The iPhone 8 has louder speakers.
According to Phil, the new iPhones have speakers that are 25% louder with deeper base. We tried to measure the loudness of the speakers and we honestly couldnʼt hear the difference.
Difference #16 – The Apple Logo on the back of the iPhone has been shifted down.
Which means youʼll have to get new cases. Or ones with a lower cutout. Or donʼt because having your logo sit slightly lower isnʼt the worst thing in the world.
The iPhone 8ʼs camera is a small incremental upgrade to the iPhone 7ʼs. For us, going from the 6s Plus to the 7 Plus was a huge deal because of the dual lens setup. We love the telephoto lens on the device.
Between the iPhone 8 and 7, Apple has definitely improved the low light capabilities of the device but at the end of the day, itʼs not a glaring upgrade like the telephoto. We equate the dual lens system on the 7 Plus to adding 50lbs to your deadlift whereas as for the 8, youʼre adding 2.5 lbs to the deadlift. Yes, you have a new personal best but itʼs no 50lbs.
If you need more info on the camera comparison, click here.
For the speed tests, we followed the same process as our iOS 11 speed test comparison. Click here to know more about the speed differences between iOS 10 and iOS 11 across the iPhone 6, 6s and iPhone 7 if you want to know more.
In general, for the speed tests, we noticed that the iPhone 8 was faster in most categories. Now this isnʼt surprising but we do want to point out the marketing fluff that Phil said during the keynote about the new A11 Bionic chip.
We performed the following tests on the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.
- 25 photo copy
- 10 min video duplicate
- FB to Insta to FBM open times
- Hitman Sniper load time
- Clash of clan load time
In addition to those tests, we added:
- Boot time
- Storage calculation time
For the 25 photo copy, the iPhone 8 performed close to the iPhone 7. However, when it came to duplicating large files, the iPhone 8 beats the 7 and 6s easily. When it comes to switching apps, the iPhone 8 also came out on top by a clear margin.
Opening up Hitman Sniper took about the same amount of time as the 7 but Clash of Clans was almost a second faster than the iPhone 7.
Boot up times with iOS 11 was over twice as fast on the iPhone 8 as the iPhone 6.
To summarize, iPhone 8 wins everything across the board. Which is no surprise considering it has the newest and baddest chip that Apple currently has mass produced.
As an end note, here is our advice. If youʼre running an iPhone 6, the iPhone 8 is going to be a great upgrade for you but if youʼre thinking about upgrading your iPhone 7. Donʼt. Itʼs not worth it.
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