- Analysis by KJ David
Making its debut alongside the iPhone 8 and the highly-talked-about iPhone X during Apple's 2017 annual September event, the iPhone 8 Plus is one of the brand's highest-ranking smartphones to date, but we won't say it brings anything head-turning to the flagship table. Let's explore its bundle of pros and cons, shall we?
Kicking things off is its classy dual 12-megapixel rear camera setup -- one for regular telephoto shots and a wide-angle subsidy cam for things like depth-of-field analysis. But the pixel-hungry monster in us cannot help but starve on... wait... 12-megapixel, really? How can this be justified when you think that 16-megapixel-or-more cameras are becoming widespread among flagships, and how can it measure up against cases like the OnePlus 5 and its 20-megapixel & 16-megapixel duo? Yes, harcore Apple lovers, we do know that the software and other details make up for the 12 megapixels and that resolution alone is not the only thing that counts, but still... 12? Oh well!
That being said, these cams are aided by a bevy of flagship-caliber imaging specs, such as a slow-motion video mode of up to 240fps and the ever-popular (at least as of its release) 4K-2160p video-recording capability . In true flagship fashion, it also features a quad-LED true-tone flash (with Slow Sync) as well as a sapphire-covered six-element lens .
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For selfies, it features a 7-megapixel FaceTime HD camera, which, though underwhelming in terms of raw pixel resolution , comes with its own image stabilization technology as well as Apple's trademark Retina Flash .
On the processing front, the iPhone 8 Plus claims to run up to 70 percent faster than its direct predecessor (iPhone 7 Plus), introducing Apple's 64-bit A11 Bionic chip decked out with a neural engine and an embedded M11 motion coprocessor . This high-end engine is composed of four efficiency cores and two performance cores, making that six processing cores in total -- a first for the iPhone, though not as promising on paper, given the wide availability of eight-core flagship Android contenders. What's more likely to catch the eye of tech-savvy users, however, is its processor's support for augmented reality (AR) , basically allowing you to project virtual objects onto real-world environments.
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Heading over to its display, the iPhone 8 Plus features an unimpressive (by flagship standards) 5.5-inch 401ppi FHD-1080p screen , opting against a 2K-1440p definition, which most of its premium-tier rivals boast. Having said that, it does spice things up through its True Tone technology , 3D Touch pressure-sensing system , and 625 cd/m2 maximum brightness level .
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Relative to its potentially-power-hungry cameras and screen, the iPhone 8's battery (capacity was not specified as of this review) boasts decent self-attributed scores, including a 14-hour video playback time and a 60-hour continuous audio playback time . It also supports both with-cable and wireless charging systems . Note, though, that it's not the most-portable of smartphones, weighing in at 202 grams , whereas the average floated only around 150g when it came out. As for memory, multimedia-heavy users will likely find its 256GB internal storage more-than-adequate -- a 64GB-only version is also offered, for those who do not need that much storage. Like all other iPhones that came before it, this edition still does not support memory expansion , but we are just about used to it by now.
Holding the iPhone 8 Plus's pros and cons in place is a fashionable glass design that nicely passes IP67 standards for dust- and waterproofing . Moreover, it features iOS 11, the latest version as of September 2017, alongside signature iPhone perks like Siri and Apple Pay .
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All said and done, Apple's iPhone 8 Plus does not take any giant leap from where the iPhone 7 Plus stood specs-wise, but with an upgraded processor, a dual-lens rear camera, and a splash-ready glass-concept fuselage leading its feature set, a good number of upscale shoppers might still want to take a bite.
** This phone is also known as: iPhone 8+
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