Decisions Decisions - Which iPhone to Get?
September 12, 2017 | ~3 mins read time.

I watched the Apple Event today with he who is causing an iPhone to be in my life. I needed some special hand-holding and he granted request. I’m still not particularly happy about having to get an iPhone. I was hoping the unveiling would incite some excitement, but I got frustrated instead.

iPhone 8 not much different than 7 on the surface

The 5 things I care about most in a phone are:

  • Security
  • Privacy
  • Camera
  • Processor
  • Battery

As stated in the previous post about iPhone, Android makers and US cellular carriers are notoriously super-lax about security and privacy. Apple is better at both. The iPhone 8 has the same security features as the 7, and will continue to do so even after the iOS 11 update.

The iPhone 8 battery has about the same stamina as the 7’s battery, and it’s decent, even if not as good as my HTC is from what I hear. I’ll make do. I have to. The A11 chip is capable of handling bigger and better things, so that’s a small bonus.

The camera is the most important every day thing that I’ll use outside of Signal. The iPhone 8’s camera has 2 advantages over the iPhone 7’s: Recording 4K video in both 30 and 60 fps vs. only 30 fps and Apple’s new “Portrait Lighting” technology for the rear dual cameras.

I’m about to gush a tiny bit. Grudgingly.

Portrait Lighting is pretty

Portrait Lighting uses real-time data from the lenses to give professional grade lighting options at the time of image capture. They said during the presentation that this isn’t filtering, but it half is. It’s just that it’s done by the hardware and software working in tandem to adjust lighting instead of requiring the use of physical lighting techniques or lens filters to give the effect you want.

This is a pretty exciting feature if you like to take pictures but don’t like to spend hours adjusting images later or don’t own the necessary traditional camera equipment to create effects during capture. It’ll be nice to do less Photoshop before sharing images.

60 fps 4K video capture

This is kind of a no-brainer if you know anything about how video is captured. Frames are essentially still shots taken rapidly. The more frames you can take in a span of time, the more smooth the resulting video will be. You’ll have less blur during movement, subtle lighting changes are more pronounced, and colour can even be a bit sharper.

Not everyone notices these things with the naked eye without a side by side comparison. However, if you do any video editing, the more frames you have to work with, the better your quality of life is. Everything from more precise clip cutting to applying filters is just easier with more frames, so I’m excited about this.

Suddenly caring about internal storage

I never cared much about internal storage before, but I suddenly do now. You can’t expand the storage on an iPhone with a micro SD card like you can on most Android devices. The iPhone 8 has a serious advantage over the iPhone 7 with this. iPhone 7 comes with 32 GB and 128 GB storage options. The 8 comes with 64 GB and 256 GB options.

I had thought the 7 Plus would be sufficient until I looked into the camera and storage some more. The iPhone 8 is the better choice for me.

g becomes Apple-whore over iPhone X

Hi, she who greatly dislikes iPhone is suddenly drooling. Not far into the iPhone X unveiling, my main issues vanished. iPhone X navigates like Android and that wretched home button is gone. Gone! Bouncy-excite. Bonus: the Portrait Lighting feature is on both the rear cameras and the front-facing camera. The OLED display is an improvement, especially for photos. It’s got a bunch of other stuff that I don’t care about like edge-to-edge display, animated emojis, and wireless charging. The 8 has wireless charging as well, but I prefer wired things.

This is the frustration: Is it worth an extra $200 for the iPhone X with 256 GB storage just to keep the Android-like navigation and get the Portrait Lighting on the front camera? We’ll see!