Every other year, Apple comes out with "S" model iPhones that enhance and speed up their main series models from the previous year. This year, however, because of the highly-anticipated 10th anniversary iPhone, aka the iPhone X, Apple has dropped the "S" and moved straight to the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.
What's that now? Yes, Apple ditched its traditional naming scheme in favor of confusing us all. The 7S and 7S Plus are actually the 8 and 8 Plus, not to be confused with the iPhone X, the 10th-anniversary iPhone. Still with me? Good.
Here's everything you need to know about the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, Apple's traditional, and probably overlooked, 2017 smartphones.
We learned today that the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will go up for preorder on Friday, Sept. 15, and will be available in stores on Friday, Sept. 22. If the 8 or 8 Plus is your go-to this year, keep those dates in mind.
The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus both maintain their 7 and 7 Plus size equivalents, at 5.45 inches by 2.65 inches for the 8 and 6.24 inches by 3.07 inches for the 8 Plus. Thinness will stay the same at around 0.29–0.30 inches, and the screens retain their respective 4.7- and 5.5-inch sizes.
If you're an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus user switching to an 8 or 8 Plus, lucky you — your old case will probably fit your brand new iPhone.
While the OLED vs. LCD battle is still raging hard, one display feature that's a bit of a game-changer is True Tone. It was introduced on Apple's latest iPad Pros and causes the display to change color temperatures based on your environment. This provides a more comfortable viewing experience and should be a great benefit to iPhone users — especially the Plus size models.
Apple is introducing lighting control within the Portrait Mode of the iPhone 8 Plus. This mode uses machine learning to analyze the light in your portrait scene, then gives you control over how to change the lighting. It looks like a useful feature, and although Apple's demo was most likely shot in a controlled studio, the results initially appear impressive.
Building on the 4K ability that has been available since the iPhone 6S, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will now be able to shoot in 4K at 60 FPS (frame per second). That format is great at capturing motion, so your videos will look smoother than ever.
The 8 and 8 Plus also now shoot 240 FPS slo-mo at 1080p. That's a quality jump from the 7 and 7 Plus, which both max out at 720p for 240 FPS. Your slo-mo videos will look the best they've ever looked on the 8 and 8 Plus.
Augmented reality is now a focus on the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. Apple showed off how its newest phones will allow you to use augmented reality in more situations than ever before, like games, educational apps, sports apps, and more.
Cool features like spacial audio change the volume and design of the sound of the AR as you move closer or further away from the source. From the game demo Apple showed off in its presentation, that feature, in particular, looks very effective.
While the phones do not have the iPhone X's camera designed for AR, it's clear Apple has a real focus on the burgeoning technology.
If there's one thing guaranteed with each new secondary model (with each new iPhone, in fact), it's that Apple upgrades its chipset. With the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, Apple is introducing the A11 Bionic chip.
Apple claims the A11 is up to 70% faster than the A10 fusion chip found in the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. The phones also now have six-core processors as opposed to the quad-core processors on the 7 and 7 Plus.
While the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus started at 32 GB storage capacities, Apple scratched that base limit. Now, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus come with either 64 GB or 256 GB. And thank goodness for that. iPhones don't have expandable storage, so anything under 64 GB really fills up quick.
Wireless charging is finally available for iPhones. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will support the feature based on Qi technology, which is a wireless charging standard that already works with many car and tech companies. This should sit well with Apple fans who have long-awaited wireless charging to come to the iPhone.
Also worthy to note is that the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, just like the iPhone X, is capable of fast charging, gaining 50% charge in about 30 minutes, but you have to use Apple's USB-C power adapters. That means more money for you (at least $74), since these devices ship with a USB power adapter, not a USB-C one. So you would need a compatible USB-C power adapter and a Lightning-to-USB-C cable.
The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus now feature all-glass enclosures, which, in addition to being a nice aesthetic addition, is what allows the phone to be compatible with wireless charging.
The 8 and 8 Plus models retain the IP67 rating that the 7 and 7 Plus models had.
Just like the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, the 8 and 8 Plus have stereo speakers located on the bottom and at the earpiece. There's also an additional built-in microphone at the earpiece section.
This time, there's only three colors to choose from — Gold, Silver, and Space Gray.
Apple isn't known for making cheap products, and that can be painfully clear when purchasing a brand new iPhone, but it's unavoidable. If you want the 8 or 8 Plus, here's what it'll cost you:
The 8 starts out at $699, while the 8 Plus starts out at $799. This pricing seems somewhat reasonable, considering it is close to the same pricing model currently established on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.
The 7 and 7 models will likely drop by $100 each model just like the 6S and 6S Plus did when the 7 models came out.
So, what do you think? Are you going to upgrade to the iPhone 8? Let us know in the comments below!
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