iPhone and iPhone 8 Plus
In November comes iPhone X but the two models replacing the 7 should not be underestimated: the same design but so much power, super photos and videos (great effects of the Plus Portrait Lighting), wireless charging thanks to the back that now turns out to be glassy like on the iPhone 4
Evolution. We will have time and way to go back to talking about iPhone X (say “ten”), but certainly the arrival of a model that breaks with the tradition of Apple smartphones (first of all because the iconic front button disappears) puts in shadow the two brothers iPhone 8 and iPhone Plus. Until last year were the school queen, today they have slipped into the second bank. In the first one there is the new type that everyone looks at. Yet, the new-old iPhone has several things to say.
Old in shape of the body and in rounded lines. What a shiver that boredom, which bores, will tell someone. In the end since iPhone 6 (3 years and 4 generations of iPhone ago) it seems more or less the same phone. If you think that a new smartphone means always changing the aesthetics, then you can stop reading here. But after all, Apple is still the company that once found the right line, tends to propose it and re-propose it. Think of the iMac, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and now iPhone. But many things, year after year, change. We are talking about new and more incremental news. The iPhone 7 was all out slow, but the new one is even faster. The iPhone 7 did nothing but bad, but the new one makes it even better. The iPhone 7 had a nice display, but the new one has one more convincing.
A couple of novel essentials of the two iPhone 8 are in common with X. The first is the (finally) arrival of induction charging, so-called wireless. Just put the iPhone 8/8 Plus on a Qi-compatible stand to recharge it. The Plus earns about 30% in 30 minutes. Compatibility with a standard like Qi means that you can use any base. Those shown during the presentation at Cupertino, produced by Mophie and Belkin, cost 65 euros but online you can find alternatives from 5 euros up. With a couple of euros you bring home a couple of baskets: one to leave home and one to work. Perfect to keep the iPhone loaded and forget what it’s like to stay dry. A company like Ikea already has about fifteen wireless-enabled products, including nightstands and lamps. The impression is that, as happened in the past in other fields, with the arrival of Apple this technology can take off: within five years we are likely to find so many induction charging surfaces in public places, furniture (eg kitchens), areas of strong passage (airports, stations, etc), cars (already there are some models).
Charging (classic) and autonomy
Wireless charging at least partially backs up the issue of slow recharging of the 2 iPhones, especially the Plus that takes over 3 hours to run from 0% to 100% charge using the mini power supply included in the package. If you are in a hurry you need to get a MacBook Charger and a USB Type-C – Lightining Cable. In this case, charging time will almost be dim (about 1h40 ‘for the Plus) and in just over half an hour you will go from 0 to 50%. It’s a shame that the power and cord costs (branded Apple) are at least 90 euros. With fifty euros you can get third-party products.
To insert new components without increasing the thickness, the battery charge of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus batteries is smaller than the 7 and 7 Plus. However, thanks to the A11 Bionic chip park, autonomy is essentially the same: discrete in the case of ‘8 and very good in the case of the 8 Plus, which remains among the best smartphones for autonomy, especially for the low stand-by consumption (just one night dropping the battery of just 3%, far less than any Android).
Glass front and back
The adoption of wireless charging has forced Apple to switch to the glass also for the back of the iPhone. From an aesthetic point of view, we like the idea. At the touch the glass is also more enjoyable than aluminum and, thanks to the curved shape of the body, the iPhone 8 Plus is less soap than the previous one. The glass creates an ideal connection with the iPhone 4S, which we believe is the one with the most successful design of the entire history of the Apple phone: in some respects the feeling of the 8 in black version (“Gray Sidereal” ancestor. Pleasant is the rendering of other shades, silver and the new Gold, which approaches a pint of shades.
On the other hand the glass has two contraindications. First of all breaks in the event of a fall (though Apple warrants that it is the “most durable glass ever installed on a smartphone”: we wait for the usual crazy people on YouTube who will drill and shoot at 8). And then the weight increases: the Plus hedges the barrier of 200 grams (202), which are so many.
On the front of the 8 stands the familiar Home button: Touch ID remains a security and speed guarantee. We will see if Face ID will succeed in everyday use as practical. However, smartphone lines have been accelerating this year: seeing a top of the range with the “cornices” that the two iPhone 8 boots can spit a bit of the mouth.
The A11 Bionic processor and hardware
The second novelty of the iPhone 8 is the presence on the same processor used by iPhone X, called A11 Bionic. Really powerful: it uses 6 core and running benchmark software is surprising.
Geekbench reaches 10.069 points in multi-core: more than the latest MacBook Pro 13 inches. On Antutu we are 213,211 points, lower than just the iPad Pro 10.5. The gpu (graphics processor) also pushes a lot: in the GFX Metal iPhone 8 T-Rex test arrives at 116 frames per second, against the 59th of last year’s model.
At this time, the iPhones are therefore the most powerful realm smartphones, thanks to the perfect hardware optimization and the way it works with the software, an unthinkable scenario for Android.
The gadget comes complete with 3 GB Ram on the 8 Plus and 2 GB on the 8th. Well that the minimum internal memory cut goes up to 64GB, badly missing the 128GB to go directly to 256GB.
The display makes a qualitative leap with the arrival of True Tone, borrowed from the iPad Pro: the difference (matching colors to ambient light) is visible.
The other eyebrow is the camera. It remains at 12 megapixels, but the sensors have been redesigned. The yield is even better than the 7, especially when talking about the Plus and especially when the ambient light is poor or difficult (strong sun / shadow contrasts). Now even the small model (and not just the Plus) has optical stabilization.
But to leave us open, however, were in particular the results of the Portraits on the Plus, with the Illuminazione Portrait function, and still in beta. Thanks to the dual camera’s unique ability to “understand” the various levels of depth of the scene, 8 Plus is able to bring out the subject’s face sharply against the background. Much more accurate than all competitors. But not only. Now the Plus can work, in real time or post-production, on the face illumination in the portrait, adding effects that would otherwise require a careful staging in the studio. I have a photo of my son, taken in full light, that I will carefully keep in the portfolio of my favorite family shots.
The camera and the A11 processor also enable the best possible performance of the augmented reality apps made with ARKit. See some examples, which are pretty convincing though in beta, in our video.