Apple released the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus nearly three years ago, which for some people means the phone must be old and outdated. But despite being a few years old, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have several key points that make it worth considering in 2021.
The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are consistently amongst the top 10 selling phones here on Swappa. The specific reasons why the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus remains a top seller likely vary from person to person — but what follows are the top five reasons why we feel the iPhone 8 is worthy of a purchase.
The iPhone 8 has a home button with Touch ID
Most newer models of the iPhone have shifted from having a home button and using Touch ID, to using gestures and Face ID. For some people, the switch to Face ID is a welcomed change, but for others, the home button and Touch ID are features they are not ready to part with just yet.
Your phone options are limited if you happen to be in the group that prefers a home button and Touch ID. Apple currently sells only one model of the iPhone with Touch ID at this time, the second-generation iPhone SE, which retails for $399.99. Buying a brand new phone is great, but you also pay a bit more for that privilege. The iPhone 8 will give you the home button and Touch ID — and when you buy it newish, you can get it at a much lower price.
The iPhone 8 features a glass back with wireless charging
Apple originally touted the iPhone 8 as having been “designed for a wireless future.” And while the iPhone 8 is no longer actively being sold by Apple — the phone was released with a glass back. The glass back brought a new look to the iPhone, as compared to the previous generation model, and it also allowed for wireless charging.
We suspect just about all iPhone users have an extra charging cable sitting around, but being able to place your phone down on a charging pad and not have to worry about plugging it in is really convenient. The wireless charging on the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus uses the Qi charging standard, which means any Qi-compatible charging pad should work.
The iPhone 8 has a 4.7-inch display with True Tone technology
At first glance, the Retina HD display on the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus looked similar to the display from the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. That is to say, both the iPhone 7 and the 8 have a 4.7-inch with a resolution of 1334 x 750 (326ppi), and the iPhone 7 Plus and 8 Plus have a 5.5-inch with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 (401ppi).
But the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus adopted a feature that was first released on the 2017 iPad Pro — True Tone. For those unfamiliar, True Tone technology means the screen colors automatically adjust based on the ambient lighting. Apple has said this means the display will be able to “better match the surrounding light for a more natural, paper-like viewing experience.”
The iPhone 8 has a 12MP camera with features that stand today
Apple launched the iPhone 8 with an improved 12MP rear-facing camera. The iPhone 8 rear-facing camera features an f/1.8 aperture with optical image stabilization and autofocus. The camera is also capable of capturing 1080p video at 30, 60, 120 or 240 frames per second and 4K video at 24, 30, or 60 frames per second.
The rear camera setup on the iPhone 8 included the single 12MP lens, but the iPhone 8 Plus included a wide-angle and telephoto lens allowing for up to 10x digital zoom or 2x optical zoom as well as improved depth-of-field and lighting effects for Portrait mode.
Both the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus also have a 7MP front-facing camera with an f/2.2 aperture, auto-image stabilization, Retina Flash and 1080p video recording capabilities.
Apple had touted the iPhone 8 as being able to capture “outstanding photos with vibrant, realistic colors and more detail.” This was backed by reviews at the time of release, and also by DxOMark, who stated the iPhone 8 was “one of the best-performing mobile device cameras” and gave the iPhone 8 a rating of 92, and the iPhone 8 Plus a rating of 94.
The iPhone 8 is still getting iOS updates from Apple
Originally released the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus in September 2017 with iOS 11. Apple, as of January 2021, is still providing regular updates for the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, which means you can update the phone to the most current version of iOS, which is iOS 14.
Apple hasn’t specified exactly when the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will reach end-of-life and stop getting software updates, however, recent patterns show some models of the iPhone getting software updates for about 5 years.
“Some early models of the iPhone received regular software updates for about 3 years, however, that update time has gotten longer as newer and newer models have been released. For example, the iPhone 5 and iPhone 6 both received software updates for about 5 years.”
We always recommend buying a phone for what it offers today, which means based on iOS 14, but if the pattern of iOS updates stays the same, we would expect to see the iPhone 8 get software updates for a few more years, possibly into 2022.
Just in case you needed a bonus reason
The above five points are solid reasons showing why the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are worthy of a purchase in 2021, but another reason is affordability.
It is true that Apple discontinued the iPhone 8 in April 2020, and up until that time, the phone was an easy recommendation. After all, it had been the sole phone with a smaller form factor and a home button for Touch ID. Recommending an iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus may have gotten a bit trickier now that the second-generation iPhone SE has been released, but the iPhone SE will cost you.
The iPhone SE sells new for $399.99 for the 64GB model, and newish unlocked models are currently averaging between $299 – $369 on Swappa. That certainly isn’t a bad price for a current-generation iPhone, but you can get an unlocked 64GB iPhone 8 (in Mint or Good) condition for about $200 right now.
|iPhone 8 Plus (64GB)||$273+||$275+||$280+||$260+|
|iPhone 8 Plus (256GB)||$300+||$300+||$310+||$289+|