Apple and Samsung. Samsung and Apple. When it comes to buying a new phone, those are the two names that’ll get mentioned most often. Why? Simple: they make the best phones, overall – for specs, for performance, and for looks and design.
The iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy S8 are two very popular options. But which is the best? As always it depends. Here, we’re going to look at the specs for both devices, as well as how they perform to see what both are really made of…
iPhone X vs Samsung Galaxy S8 (Quick Look)
|Samsung Galaxy S8||iPhone X|
|Display: 5.8in display with a 2960 x 1440 resolution (570 ppi)||Display: 5.8-inch display with a 2436 x 1125 resolution (458ppi)|
|Dimensions: 148.9 x 68.1 x 8.0 mm (155g)||Dimensions: 143.6mm x 70.9mm x 7.7mm (174g)|
|Storage Options: 64GB + MicroSD cards up to 256GB||Storage Options: 64 or 256GB|
|RAM: 4GB||RAM: 3GB|
|Camera: 12MP single-lens system, 4K Video, OIS||Camera: Dual-lens 12MP wide-angle and telephoto cameras, Dual optical image stabilisation, Optical zoom|
|Battery Size: 3000 mAh||Battery Size: 2716 mAh|
|CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835||CPU: A11 Bionic chip|
|Wireless Charging: Yes||Wireless Charging: Yes|
|Water Resistant: Yes – IP68||Water Resistant: Yes - IP68|
|Price: ||Price: |
Which is The Best Phone?
Ask 100 people and you’d probably get 50% saying its the iPhone and the other 50% claiming Samsung. Apple and Samsung are the two biggest phone brands on the planet and their fans are loyal – to the extreme. Both the iPhone X and Galaxy S8 are excellent phones, and which you go for will largely depend on what OS you prefer to use…
Do you want the flexibility of Android or the reliability and market-leading software support of iOS? If you’re undecided or don’t care, I would advise that you go with the iPhone X. Not because it’s “better” but because Apple’s iOS support is vastly superior to Samsung’s track record with Android updates. And that goes even for its newer phones.
With the iPhone X, you’ll be getting steady iOS updates well into the middle of the 2020s. With the Galaxy S8? Well, it’s not looking likely that it will even get Android 10. You can install your own custom ROM, of course, but this process is fiddly and not for the faint-hearted. On paper and in real life, both are excellent options.
But, for me, the iPhone X has the Galaxy S8 beat in a couple of areas:
- Software & Updates – Apple’s iOS platform, while more restrictive than Android, is much better for updates. With an iPhone, you get timely updates as soon as they pushed live by Apple. This means you’re always running the latest and most secure software. And because the iPhone X is still relatively new, you’ll be getting support from Apple well into the 2020s.
- Camera – The iPhone X features dual 12MP wide-angle and telephoto cameras with dual optical image stabilization and 2X optical zoom. The Galaxy S8? It’s only got a 12MP single-lens camera. For image quality, depth, and overall quality, Apple’s iPhone X is a far superior phone when it comes to imaging.
For this reason, as well as the fact the iPhone X is one of the best-looking phones ever created, it’s a fair and clean win for Apple’s first-ever OLED phone. It’s close, mind you. But just not close enough to call it a draw.
iPhone X vs Galaxy S8: Specs
Here are the specs for the iPhone X:
- Display: 5.8in OLED display with a 2436×1125 resolution at 458 ppi
- Dimensions: 143.6mm x 70.9mm x 7.7mm
- Weight: 174 grams
- Storage: 64 or 256GB
- Memory: 3 GB RAM
- Processors: A11 Bionic chip
- Front camera: 7 MP photos and 1080p video
- Rear camera: Dual 12MP wide-angle and telephoto cameras, Dual optical image stabilization, Optical zoom, 4K video
- Battery: 2716 mAh, Wireless charging
And here are the specs for the Galaxy S8:
- Display: 5.8in display with a 2960 x 1440 resolution at 570 ppi
- Dimensions: 148.9 x 68.1 x 8.0 mm
- Weight: 155 grams
- Storage: 64GB, plus support for microSD cards up to 256GB
- Memory: 4 GB RAM
- Processors: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 2.4GHz 64-bit Octa-core processor OR Samsung Exynos 8995 Octa-core CPU – region dependent
- Front camera: 8MP and 1080p HD video
- Rear camera: 12 MP, 4K video
- Battery life: 3000 mAh, Wireless charging
Both phones come in 64GB models, but only the iPhone X offers a high-end-tier of 256GB. On the other hand, the S8 supports microSDXC cards up to 256GB. If you take its storage expansion capabilities into account, your S8 could actually offer more storage than the high-end iPhone X.
The S8 also has more RAM. It features 4GB of memory, versus the 3GB found in the iPhone X. However, while many see the RAM as the main factor in determining a smartphone’s speed, it’s actually not as clear-cut as that. What really matters is how well the RAM and CPU together work with the software. And on the front the iPhone X with its A11 Bionic chip with neural engine. If the A11 had legs it would literally run circles around the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 found in the S8 (and the Exynos 8995 found in some regional models).
iPhone X vs Galaxy S8: Display
Both of the flagships feature edge-to-edge displays. And both also offer 5.8in displays. However, the S8 also features a moderately higher resolution at 2960×1440 at 570 ppi versus the iPhone X’s 2436 x 1125 resolution at 458 ppi. Then again, the iPhone X’s display features a true tone panel, which means it adjusts to match the warmth of the color temperature in the room, making it easier on the eyes.
iPhone X vs Galaxy S8: Battery
The S8 has the bigger battery at 3000 mAh, but both phones should last around the same amount of time in average daily use. Both the iPhone X and the S8 also feature wireless charging, which is nice as the tech gains more adoption and wireless charging pads can be founding more places.
iPhone X vs Galaxy S8: Camera
As far as cameras go, the iPhone X beats the Galaxy S8 hands down. Yes, the S8 has the better selfie cam with its 8MP front camera (the iPhone X’ is 7MP) but when we talk about the rear cameras the iPhone X kills it. That’s because it features a dual-camera system with 12 MP telephoto and wide-angle lenses. The rear camera on the S8 is only a 12MP single-lens system. Both do shoot 4K video, however.
iPhone X vs Galaxy S8: Cost & Verdict
|Samsung Galaxy S8||iPhone X|
|Price: ||Price: |
Apple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.