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Apple iPhone 8 vs iPhone 8 Plus in 2021: Is It Just Size?

author Luis Silva (March 2020 Updated: August 2021 - 6 min. reading time)

The price of the iPhone 8 Plus isn't that much higher, but it isn't the smartphone you should pick.

But it has better battery life.

Are there other things worth mentioning?

With the iPhone 8 Plus, you'll also get a larger (+0.8") display, a telephoto lens (+57 mm), and more RAM (3GB vs. 2GB). But with the iPhone 8, you can get a lightweight body (54 g./1.90 oz less).

Still, you'll have to decide for yourself because they ended up with similar scores.

How much will the additional specs cost me?

If you ignore carrier offers, since it is more affordable, you can end up saving up to about $20.

Is it worth getting the iPhone 8 in 2021?

The iPhone 8 is a pretty decent smartphone in 2021, especially now that it's cheaper. That doesn't mean you should ignore other devices like the iPhone SE 2 since it has better performance, better cameras, more security updates, and more RAM.

Is the iPhone 8 Plus still worth getting in 2021?

For a phone introduced in 2017, the iPhone 8 Plus still has good performance and good cameras. If you can find a great deal, it does make sense in 2021, but that doesn't mean a phone like (again) the iPhone SE 2 with better performance and more security updates isn't a better choice.

Read on so you can learn more about their differences, how they compare to similarly priced rivals, and how other specialists evaluate them.

Check prices on Amazon Check prices on Amazon
Click here or scroll down to check prices on eBay, BestBuy, and Walmart.

I earn a small fee from qualifying purchases. It doesn't affect the price you pay nor my opinions.

Apple iPhone 8, Apple iPhone 8 Plus

Photo by A. H a n a n on Unsplash

CONTENTS

Click on one of these
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Introduction

Both phones are a great choice if you're looking for an affordable iPhone, but if you're indecisive about these two, you're at the right place.

The iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus were launched in September 2017.

Here you can look at the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus, compare each other's features, and decide which one is best for you. Let us delve into the finer details.

The weight of each section

For additional information regarding our smartphone comparisons, check this FAQ.

to check who their rivals are.

Price*
vs.
Device iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Release Date 2017, September 2017, September 0y.
OS Updates 6 years 6 years 0y.
Security Updates 6 years 6 years 0y.

*Reference: 100: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.

Which One Has The Best Performance?

As for performance, Geekbench 5 scores the iPhone 8 Plus 4% ahead of its sibling in the multi-core ranking. Overall, you wouldn't feel that much of a difference between them.

Performance*
vs.
Features iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
SoC Apple A11 Apple A11
Graphics Apple GPU Apple GPU
Geekbench 5 Score 2245
2332
87
OS iOS 11 iOS 11
Tek-Score
5.7
5.9
0.1

*Reference: 100: Apple iPhone 12.

Which Phone Has The Best Display?

Apple iPhone 8 front transparent png Apple iPhone 8 Plus front transparent png

The iPhone 8 Plus is the title-holder here, but the iPhone 8 is just as good.

If you prefer a smartphone with a small display, stop searching, and just pick the iPhone 8. Most phones from its price range don't even come close.

The iPhone 8 also falls behind the rest of its class: Its display density is 101 DPI below the usual.

Usually, anything below 500 nits isn't that good for HDR nor outdoor visibility.

Considering the iPhone 8, you should know that 75% of its rivals can play HDR content and have an Always-On display, and 92% have an AMOLED screen. On the contrary, only 22% of them feature Gorilla Glass 6 or Victus.

Concerning the iPhone 8 Plus, as a reference, 81% of its rivals can play HDR content and have an Always-On display, and 94% have an AMOLED screen. Yet, only 23% of them feature Gorilla Glass 6 or Victus.

Display Density (DPIs)*
vs.
Features iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Size 4.7
5.5
0.8
Screen Type LCD LCD
Resolution (px) 750x1334
1080x1920
1073100
Refresh Rate 60hz 60hz 0
Dots per Inch 325.61
400.53
74.92
Always-On-Display No No
Notch - -
Peak Brightness 530 nits
530 nits
0
HDR - -
Sub Tek-Score
0.8
1.4
0.6
Protection Ion-strengthened glass Ion-strengthened glass
Tek-Score
2.7
2.9
0.2

*Reference: 100: Sony Xperia 1 II.

Which Phone Has The Best Cameras?

Apple iPhone 8 back transparent png Apple iPhone 8 Plus back transparent png

We can safely state that both phones have similar cameras.

About the iPhone 8: I would've loved it if DXOMARK reviewed this camera, but we can place it at around 103* points. By including its digital zoom abilities, it'll get 107** points.

Last (but not least), you should know that all of its rivals can record videos in 4K or more and have an ultra-wide-angle lens.

About the iPhone 8 Plus: DXOMARK's gurus gave this shooter a score of 104. By adding its telephoto lens, that score goes up to 112**. You can click here to check it out.

Winding it up, just so you know, just like the other device, all of its rivals can record videos in 4 or 8K and have an ultra-wide-angle lens.

*DXOMARK is a world-known reference in the camera benchmarking department. Unfortunately, there are lots of good cameras left out of their labs. So whenever I come across one such camera, I score every camera spec (like sensor size, lenses, and so on) to get a similar global score. Our lastest test on our formula showed a deviation of up to 2 points.

**Consider this as an estimative, at least for phones with no zoom and up to 35 to 40MP. They moved to a better camera test protocol, and I only have few reviewed devices to deduce a compatible score.

Picture Quality*
vs.
Primary Camera iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Megapixels 12
12
0
Aperture 1.8
1.8
0.0
Lens 28mm
28mm
0
Lens Type Regular Regular
Flash 4 4 0
HDR Yes Yes
OIS Yes Yes
Video 2160 2160 0
Score 107
112
5

*Reference: 100: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra.

Extra Camera(s) iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus vs.
Megapixels - 12
Aperture - 2.8
Lens - 57mm (2x zoom)
Lens Type - Telephoto lens
Score 4 8 4
Selfie Camera iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus vs.
Megapixels 7
7
0
Aperture 2.2
2.2
0.0
Lens - 32mm
iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus vs.
Tek-Score
6.3
6.6
0.3

Who has the best frame?

The iPhone 8 does stand out because of its weight.

In addition to that, the iPhone 8 is approximately 19% smaller than most phones from this price range.

The iPhone 8 weighs 148 g. (5.22 oz), while its sibling is 54 g. (2.13 oz) heavier. But because screen size also matters, I've developed a formula for a kind of "display size to phone weight" ratio. The iPhone 8 got a score of 3.5, which suggests it's kind of weighty for a 4.7 inches display. The iPhone 8 Plus, on the other hand, has 0.7, which indicates it's oddly heavy.

You can drop the iPhone 8 into the water, up to 1 meter deep, much like the iPhone 8 Plus. That should be for up to 30 minutes, in standby and freshwater only, so no saltwater or pools here.

Looks*
vs.
Body iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Size 138 x 67 x 7 mm
(4.87 x 2.36 x 0.25 in)
158 x 78 x 7 mm
(5.57 x 2.75 x 0.25 in)
21546
Weight 148 g. (5.22 oz)
202 g. (7.13 oz)
54
Build Front and back glass Front and back glass
Colors Silver, Gold, Space Gray, and Red Gold, Silver, Space Gray, and Red
Screen To Body Ratio 65.85%
67.67%
1.82
Disp.Size To Weight Score 3.5 0.7 -2.8
Looks 5.0/10
5.5/10
0.4
Waterproof IP67 IP67
Biometrics Front Fingerprint Front Fingerprint
Tek-Score
6.9
4.7
-2.2

*100% = 4+ colors + front and back glass + S2BR: 86+%.

Which has the best battery?

The iPhone 8 does have a smaller battery, with 1821 mAh, while the iPhone 8 Plus has 2691 mAh. And GSMArena did test them out, and the latter is the one that stands out.

So, it doesn't have the best battery life out there. Apple should've opted for a larger battery, just like their equally sized rivals. By doing some math, it got a "battery to physical size" rate of 1.9. But its sibling got 7.8.

One more thing about battery life on the iPhone 8: it is way below the typical values of its competitors. These tests show that it lasts up to 13% less.

Battery*
vs.
Features iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Capacity (mAh) 1821 2691 870
1h Talk + 1h Web + 1h Video 75% left
79% left
4
1h Talk + 3h Web + 1h Video 59% left
63% left
4
1h Talk + 1h Web + 3h Video 57% left
65% left
8
Bat. To Phone Size Score 7.8 1.9 -5.9
Sub Tek-Score
6.4
6.9
0.5
Fast Charging 15w
15w
0
Wireless Charging 5w
5w
0
Tek-Score
6.0
6.2
0.2

*Reference: 90: Samsung Galaxy A31.

Which has more storage?

They share the same amount of storage.

In terms of RAM, the iPhone 8 brings 2GB. In terms of storage, it has 64GB. Be aware that at this price segment, others deliver more RAM and more storage. They're closer to 114Gb of storage and 6GB of RAM.

On the iPhone 8 Plus, you'll find 64GB of internal storage and 3GB of RAM. Again, chances are that you'll have more RAM and more storage by picking any rival at that price range. 7Gb/122Gb. That's the average.

Most people should be OK with their internal storage. However, if you can't get enough of the record button, 64 GB may be too short for you.

Storage*
vs.
Features iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
RAM (GB) 2GB
3GB
1
Internal (GB) 64GB
64GB
0
Micro SD No No
Tek-Score
2.8
2.8
0.0

*Internal Storage + 256GB Memory Card (Max: 512GB).

Which is the most connectivity-friendly?

They also do have a resemblance here.

You can find these two in the LTE variant.

Connectivity
vs.
Features iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Network LTE LTE
Bluetooth 5.0
5.0
NFC Yes Yes
3.5mm jack No No
Tek-Score
3.6
3.6
0.0

Which is more affordable?

Here's what we've found out:

Apple iPhone 8

Reference: $370

Apple iPhone 8

Apple iPhone 8 Plus

Reference: $390

Apple iPhone 8 Plus

I earn a small fee from qualifying purchases. It doesn't affect the price you pay nor my opinions, but it will mean a lot if you click on one of these buttons before purchasing your next phone (or whatever else you end up buying). You'll be helping to take this to the next level.

Prices on eBay are in $US but Europe-based. You can click to check the prices in your country.

Prices marked with ! are from renewed/refurbished/carrier-locked phones (except eBay prices that, as a last resort, can be from bids or used devices).

How much of a "phone" can your money buy?
That's how much "score" you can get with $100 based on the global score that you'll see in the next section (higher is better).

Have you found better prices elsewhere? The formula is simple: score/price*100.

Value for money iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus VS
Amazon 2.31 ! 2.30 ! -
eBay 1.30 1.23 -0.07
Best Buy - - -
Walmart - - -

Also, don't forget to check the latest deals from these four stores, and the state of the art on mobile technology, if you don't want to overpay on your next smartphone.


Related articles:


Best smartphone deals


The Best Unbiased Smartphones For All Budgets


Smartphone Specs Statistics: The State Of The Art (Q1 2021)

Are you also considering other options? The global score can help. Just so you have an idea, take a look at where its adversaries average. They're at 6.1 (for the iPhone 8) and 6.2 (for the iPhone 8 Plus).

Verdict: Does any of them really stand out?

Both phones still offer excellent performance, even 3 years after their release. Although not having the looks of the younger iPhones, you'll still get a pretty decent camera and battery life. But if you were looking for a high-resolution AMOLED screen, you can forget about it.

At least, you do get fast charging together with wireless charging.

The iPhone 8 Plus being Full-HD, does stand out in the resolution of its display, but nothing to write home about.

I do value its optical zoom, but its weight is almost unbelievable for a 5.5" smartphone.

Pros iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
#1 Cameras Cameras
#2 Fast Charging Fast Charging
#3 Wireless Charging Wireless Charging
Cons iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
#1 Screen Resolution AMOLED
#2 AMOLED Always-On-Display
#3 Always-On-Display MicroSD Slot
#4 MicroSD Slot Weight
#5 3.5mm Jack 3.5mm Jack
#6 Price Price
Relative Score*
vs.
Global Score iPhone 8 iPhone 8 Plus
Gaming Score
3.4
3.7
0.2
Tek-Score
4.82
4.81
-0.01
Your Score

Scroll the sliders down below to get your own personalized score. Let's suppose you value performance and battery life, and you don't really care about anything else. Then, just set the "Performance" and the "Battery" sliders up to 5 (5+5=10), and then the other sliders down to 0. You'll know what's the best phone for you.

Performance 1.9
Display 1.7
Cameras 1.4
Frame 0.9
Battery 1.9
Storage 2.0
Connectivity 0.4
Total Should be 10 or as close as possible: 9.6

*Reference: 100: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.

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About me

Hello!

My name is Luis Silva, and I have a degree in computer management. Ever since I was a teenager, I've loved everything to do with tech. Music, pictures, video editing, I've done it all! This site is a place for me to share some of the knowledge I have, as well as keep up-to-date with current trends. This is a wonderful place for tech-geeks and everyone else that just want to learn more about tech and smartphones in general.


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Apple iPhone 8 Related Comparisons


Apple iPhone 8 Plus Related Comparisons

×

"Display size to phone weight" ratio explained

This indeed is a "display size to phone weight" ratio, but because every phone ended up somewhere between 0.0272 and 0.0421, I've amplified (adapted) those values so they would fit in a 0-10 scale. As of now, the best smartphone is the Samsung Galaxy A40, with 140g. (4.94 oz) for a 5.9 inch display. It got a score of 9.92. While the worse device is the iPhone 8 Plus, which weighs 202 g. (7.13 oz) and has a 5.5-inch display. It ended up with a score of 0.75.

Please, be aware that this score is subject to change if and when a new smartphone comes along that ends up being outside of this scale.

×

"Battery to device size" ratio explained

This score should give you an idea about the energy footprint of the devices you're considering. It reflects not only the hardware and the energy that it requires but also the amount of energy that the battery can deliver.

The major spenders on any device should be the display and the SoC. But everything from a notification led to its modems need to be optimized, or else, the OEM should simply include a bigger battery as a compensation. Unfortunately, it isn't always possible due to size limitations. But in the end, if a particular OEM can do a good job and give you excellent battery life on a small device, so should everyone else. That's why I've added a "battery to device size" ratio. But since the real scale went from 119 (for the Galaxy S10e, Snapdragon variant) and up to 164 (for the iPhone 7 Plus), I've decided to convert them so they would fit in a 0-10 scale, being 0 the worst device, (the iPhone 7 Plus) and 10 the one every OEM should look up to.

As an example, Apple did an excellent job on the iPhone 7. It has a score of 8. Despite having a small capacity, the hardware is well optimized, and it still gives you decent battery life considering its size. The iPhone 7 Plus, on the other hand, with those bezels shrinking its display size, clearly could've been the #1 in our top 10 list of best battery devices if Apple simply filled all that empty space with a bigger battery.

As a side note: I haven't included the dept of the devices in this formula because even if a device ended up being 1mm/0.03 inches thicker, it wouldn't matter that much to those who really value battery life.

Please, be aware that this score is subject to change if and when a new smartphone comes along that ends up being outside of this scale.

×

Rivals

As of now, these are the rivals that were considered for each of them. They may change every time its prices are updated.

These are the lowest prices found on Amazon, eBay, BestBuy, and Walmart.


 Apple iPhone 8 
  • ApplerivaliPhone XR
    $344
  • OnePlusrival7
    $388
  • XiaomirivalMi 9T Pro
    $385
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 8
    $419
  • ApplerivaliPhone 8 Plus
    $390
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy M30s
    $300
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10e
    $428
  • ApplerivaliPhone XS
    $410
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 10
    $398
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S9
    $305
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10e EX
    $428
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10+ SD
    $359
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20+ EX
    $329
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10 EX
    $429
  • OnePlusrival7T
    $329
  • OnePlusrival7 Pro
    $429
  • HuaweirivalP30
    $400
  • GooglerivalPixel 4
    $386
  • OnePlusrival6T
    $300
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S9 Plus
    $305
  • HuaweirivalMate 20 Pro
    $436
  • XiaomirivalMi 9
    $400
  • XiaomirivalMi 9 Lite
    $317
  • ApplerivaliPhone SE 2
    $380
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10 Lite
    $299
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A71
    $400
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 10 Lite
    $425
  • OnePlusrivalNord
    $410
  • GooglerivalPixel 4a
    $350
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20 FE
    $359
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20 FE 5G
    $359
  • OpporivalFind X2 Neo
    $398
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy M51
    $396
  • OnePlusrivalNord N10
    $299
  • XiaomirivalMi 10T Lite
    $325
  • XiaomirivalMi 10 Lite
    $399
  • XiaomirivalMi 11 Lite
    $349
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A52
    $380
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A42
    $299
  • XiaomirivalMi 9t Pro
    $385

 Apple iPhone 8 Plus 
  • ApplerivaliPhone 8
    $370
  • ApplerivaliPhone XR
    $344
  • OnePlusrival7
    $388
  • XiaomirivalMi 9T Pro
    $385
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 8
    $419
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10e
    $428
  • ApplerivaliPhone XS
    $410
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 10
    $398
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10e EX
    $428
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10+ SD
    $359
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20+ EX
    $329
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S10 EX
    $429
  • OnePlusrival7T
    $329
  • OnePlusrival7 Pro
    $429
  • HuaweirivalP30
    $400
  • GooglerivalPixel 4
    $386
  • HuaweirivalMate 20 Pro
    $436
  • XiaomirivalMi 9
    $400
  • XiaomirivalMi 9 Lite
    $317
  • ApplerivaliPhone SE 2
    $380
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A71
    $400
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy Note 10 Lite
    $425
  • OnePlusrivalNord
    $410
  • GooglerivalPixel 4a
    $350
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20 FE
    $359
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20 FE 4G
    $463
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy S20 FE 5G
    $359
  • OpporivalFind X2 Neo
    $398
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy M51
    $396
  • XiaomirivalMi 10T Lite
    $325
  • XiaomirivalMi 10 Lite
    $399
  • XiaomirivalMi 11 Lite
    $349
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A52
    $380
  • SamsungrivalGalaxy A72
    $445
  • XiaomirivalMi 9t Pro
    $385
×

Formula deviation

Since the guys at DxoMark don't review every camera out there, I've come up with a formula based on the ones that they do rate, so I could get an equivalent score for the ones they don't review. After testing it against these cameras, I got the deviation between that and their DxO score.

Device: DxOScore Deviation
Samsung Galaxy A50: 88 -1
Apple iPhone XR: 104 1
Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro: 108 -7
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro: 87 1
Sony Xperia 1: 99 -1
Sony Xperia 5: 101 1
Samsung Galaxy Note 8: 100 0
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus: 126 2
Apple iPhone 8 Plus: 96 -3
Xiaomi Pocophone F1: 92 -1
Apple iPhone 7 Plus: 90 -1
Apple iPhone X: 101 3
Apple iPhone 11: 112 -1
Samsung Galaxy Note 8: 100 0
Samsung Galaxy Note 9: 107 1
Apple iPhone XS Max: 110 -2
Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max: 124 1
Samsung Galaxy S10: 124 2
Apple iPhone XS: 110 -1
Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus: 120 -2
OnePlus 7 Pro: 122 0
OnePlus 7T Pro: 122 0
Huawei P30 Pro: 125 -1
Google Pixel 4: 117 0
Google Pixel 3: 103 0
Google Pixel 2: 100 0
Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus: 127 -2
Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra: 132 2
OnePlus 6: 100 0
OnePlus 6T: 101 1
Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus: 105 -1
Huawei Mate 20 Pro: 120 0
Xiaomi Mi 9: 115 0
Huawei Mate 30 Pro: 132 0
Huawei P40 Pro: 140 -1
Apple iPhone SE 2: 101 0
OnePlus 8 Pro: 126 0
Xiaomi Mi 8: 105 1
Samsung Galaxy A71: 89 1
Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro: 134 0

As you can see, most cameras sit between 1 and -1, while a few of them go up to 2 or -2. That means it's reasonable to assume other similar cameras that they don't review to, in the worst-case scenario, be anywhere from -2 to 2 points from the score that the formula gets.

For example: Given that the Pixel 4 got 117 points and that the Pixel 4 XL share the same year and camera specs, it's reasonable to expect a score of 117 too. But in reality, if they do review that camera, it may end up anywhere between 115 and 119.

Be aware that at DxO, they give a score based on their opinion, not based on any formula. That's why I think there's an odd difference of 6 points between the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X. In theory, they should have the same camera.

I'm guessing that the Mi 9T Pro got a deviation of 7 points because they tested its Chinese variant (the K20 Pro).

Update: They just changed their protocol to include preview image evaluation and trustability. I'm keeping the old table (for now) for reference purposes, and I'll be adding a new one as soon as they review at least a couple of new mclass-range cameras.

You can expect the same (or a bit bigger) deviation for high-end cameras, but anything with a score below 100-110 should be taken with a grain of salt.

This is valid for all cameras tested with the previous protocol. For those that they dclassn't test, the deviation may be up to twice as much.

×

About GeekBench 5

This is just a quick note to let you know that, if, by any chance, the smartphone you're looking for isn't on the GeekBench site yet, you can check on GsmArena.com, as they also usually test smartphones with that benchmark tool.



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