iPhone X vs iPhone 8 Plus/iPhone 8 interface comparison: Does it really fit more content?

With the new iPhone X, iOS developers are threading new waters. Apple is debarking from the time-tested 9:16 aspect ratio of the software and now have a whole new slew of guidelines, requirements, and restrictions with the new 2:1 software layout, which should theoretically fit a bit more content on the screen. 

But is that the case?

We primed our respectable iOS trio - the iPhone X, the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus - and took it upon ourselves to find out how iOS 11 differs between the three devices in terms of overall content scaling. 

Settings menu

Being the hub with all the essential iOS settings, this one has only scored incremental improvements. A few menus have been bundled together for a more user-friendly experience, but overall, it looks rather similar to iOS 10. However, as you would see, the new iPhone X doesn't actually fit that much more menu items on the screen compared to the more 'mundane' iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. Both the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus show 7 items, the iPhone X can only do one more and rests its case at a grand total of 8.

Scrolling down to a slightly more populated area reveals the same - the iPhone X only fits marginally more content on its elongated display compared to the other two iPhones. There are 14.5 elements on the iPhone X in our second scenario, whereas the iPhone 8 Plus only fits 13 menu items. Meanwhile, the iPhone 8 drags a bit behind with 12 elements, but then again, that's not such a drastic difference.

Call logs

Now, here is one of the essential parts of any phone that the iPhone X should really shine, right? That long display should really make long lists of missed and received calls a breeze to navigate through.

Well, that's sort of the case here - there's a difference indeed, with both the iPhone X and iPhone 8 reflecting on the numbers in their names. You get to see 10 call log entries on the iPhone X, whereas the iPhone 8 only fits... 8 entries. Again, you're not losing that much content if you're boasting the iPhone 8. Meanwhile, the iPhone 8 Plus serves as a middle ground and fits 8+1 call logs on its screen.

Browsing & Internet

The difference in this section is a bit easier to see and comprehend. Firing up PhoneArena.com on Safari on all three devices wields expected results - the iPhone X fits the most content, while the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone 8 lag a bit behind.. The overall difference between the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 could be as big as a whole article, which is a notable difference.

The same notable difference in browsing can also be seen on Apple's own website.

Apple Music

With the iPhone X you get the full scope of available Apple Music shortcuts, like New Music, Playlists, TV & Movies, and Top Charts, whereas the other two devices cut some of the content and both display a grand total of two elements before you have to 

App Store

Frankly, the App Store looks the best on the iPhone X. The awkward cut at the bottom part on the iPhone 8 screenshot is a telltale sign that you;re getting less content at a glance. If you're shooting for the best possible iOS experience, then you should be going for either the iPhone X or the iPhone 8 Plus, both of which fit slightly more content on screen. 


Stock apps

Great, but is the deal with Apple's stock apps, like Weather and Maps? Is there a significant difference in the way content is scaled? Well, not that much. In the Weather app, for example, you will be hard-pressed to find any difference between the three iPhones. 

To a certain extent that's also true to the Maps app, which displays almost the same amount of map info on all three devices.

Popular third-party apps

Unlike stock apps, popular third-party ones like YouTube and Instagram do make better use of the iPhone X's tall display. The difference between the three devices could be as big as a whole YouTube video hidden from your eyes, requiring you to swipe a lot more in order to explore the same amount of recommended videos, for example.

Instagram tells the same story - you simply get more content on the iPhone X compared to the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.


So, is there such a difference between the iPhone X and the other two regular iPhone in Apple's lineup? It depends - for some users, the slightly more content you get on the OLED iPhone at all times could literally be the little stone that tips the scales. To others, however, the difference will be borderline minuscule and totally not worthy of a mention.

In real-life usage, however, the fact that you get more content on your screen right away is beneficial to the user experience - the way we see it, the less you have to interact with your phone to do a specific task or display certain content compared to another device, the better. Some could view that as being counter-intuitive, we know, but if you think about it, it makes sense.

But, in the end of the day, the difference is not that big.



1. palmguy

Posts: 986; Member since: Mar 22, 2011

Portrait view? I was waiting for the landscape view. Ooooh boy. Software black boxed for the X. Making the minimized bezels irrelevant and you now have an iPhone 8. I couldn't believe it.

16. worldpeace

Posts: 3135; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

And most games still got black box as well, making the actual usable screen much smaller

21. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

You mean most games just show at their normal resolution. That is what you mean...right? You don;t have to stretch them wider if you don';t want too. What law says that everything must use 100% of the display area? For me, on large screens like TV's of PC monitors, looking at for example 1080 content stretched on a 4K display like my laptop or on the Surface Pro 3K display, is an issue for sure. But for a phone, with the display already being so small, I just don't see the problem.

17. Klinton

Posts: 1409; Member since: Oct 24, 2016

BTW how could they say ''more content' , when the characters and images are smaller on X? One more think about the 'content'- many ppl prefer to have battery icon in the 'content'. Right? P.S. The real usable size of iPhX is not bigger than iPhone 8 Plus. Period. All the media spells and black magics will not change it.

30. Soundjudgment

Posts: 370; Member since: Oct 10, 2016

But of course you *pay* for that usable-space with a larger iPhone 8 Plus body-size. Hence the trade-off.

2. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

Can you do the same thing with a Note 3 and 7 and 8 comparison? What effects this is more than physical screen size. The resolution would also matter. iPhone 8 - 750 x 1334 iPhone 8+ - 1080 x 1920 iPhone X - 1125 x 2436 This vs the S8 vs the S7 from 1440 x 2560 up to 1440 x2960 The S8 gain 400 pixels in one direction, while keeping the other the same. So basically just slightly wider in landscape more. The iPhone X is only 45 pixel wider in landscape. Even though it has more pixels in portrait view, Apple wasted the space by spreading things out. Liek they did on the 12.9" iPad. All the padding between the icons is stupid. If Apple was smart, they would have made the icons smaller, which woudl have added another row. The reason they don't do this is because, they need for every iPhone to be the same. But they could have easiy added option for the user to pick how many rows and columns they want in the UI. Samsung does this. Even though the phone has a higher resolution, you can set the UI to look like the old 4x5 layout from the S5 days if you want. More proof of how dumb down iOS is. So glad I use both. When you own both, you can actually see who makes the biggest more stupidest mistakes. Which is why Samsung gets criticized less, they make less mistakes.

3. kiko007

Posts: 7520; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

"Which is why Samsung gets criticized less, they make less mistakes." Samsung gets criticized less because ultimately people don't give a damn about what they do regarding software. Hell, people don't care what they do in general if we're being completely honest.

5. Peacetoall unregistered

Samsung user interface is best in class. You should really try it the features it provide is just awesome. Multi window , floating window with resizable window. 5 floating windows can be opened at the same time. Theme engine , knox , advance iterations ,

11. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

You're wrong and I could give 2 shakes about your opinion. If no one cared about Samsung, then why do they sell 300M phones per year? Yeah I'm gonna sound just like how idiots like you typically do. Lets use sales as a metric. Anyways. The facts show Samsung has made far less mistakes vs Apple. S4 had way to many features, that's its hardware could not run them properly. They would simply be too slow or not work when needed because the phone was bogged down S5 fix this with less of those useless gummicky features and they added waterproofing. S6, they removed the sdcard slot and waterproofing and they got hammered for it. S7 the card slot returned and so did waterproofing. They couldnt implenet the under-the-screen FPS, they still kept the old one. When Samsung and Moto were in talks with Authentec for the non-swop[e FPS, Apple bought the company nd instead of Samsung quitting, they sourced an option from somewhere else. They include fast charger in the box. Apple doesn't. Samsung increases screen size, but did it gradually and each device was actually smaller or only slightly bigger than the other with larger display. Samsung doesn't shove firmware onto older models that won;t runt he software properly. Apple doesn't care. In fact they are so careless, even iOS 11 slowed down only a 1 year old phone. Doesn't happen on Samsung phones. Even on the S6, Android 7.1 runs better than the software it came with. iPhone 7 goes from 9 to 10 and has issues an then 10 to 11 creates more issues. Apple goes big and the phone is BIGGEr than a phone in the same year with a bigger display inside it. Apple dropping the larger connector for Lightning, but the port supports less capabilities. Apple makes home button not move to replace it with some gimmick hepatic feedback garbage, and removes the headphone jack. Now you can';t charge and listen unless you get an iPhone 8, iPhone X has several UI mistakes and the notch is a compromise that wasn't even needed at all. apple doesn't care because they have loyal fans who don't even care of their iPhone kills them, they will still buy it. A quick Google shows Samsung has had far less user complaints with their phones as facts show they have far less issues vs any iPhone period. You can lie like a dog all you want, it won;t change the facts. Only trolls you like you who try to highlight ever negative about Samsung as possible, when Apple is equal or worse but never better. Enjoy your slavery to Apple.

33. ScottsoNJ56

Posts: 132; Member since: Oct 01, 2017

And enjoy your slavery to Samsung

10. MarvzIsFallen

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

Less mistakes? How cool to have an exploding Note 7!!! Sending from my iphone X

13. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

I never had an exploding Note 7. Did some catch on fire sure they did. How many iPhone have caught on fire? LOTS. How many iphones have exploded? Lots. How many iPhone have killed people? LOTS. How many recorded cases of a Samsung phone killing someone? ZERO!!!!!! Apple iPhone have nearly 10 known cases of havign cause death, possible cause an airplane to crash, which caused death, and people doing stupid things with their iPhone, like standing on the edge of a bridge have fallen to their deaths. All cases of iPhone usage or misusage. Samsung users are smart enough not to attempt stupid stunts, though I am sure there are exception.

15. Tipus

Posts: 905; Member since: Sep 30, 2016

Same as bent or split iphone. It's all history, get over it.

22. Peacetoall unregistered

" sending from my iphone X " How is your experience with notch

6. Subie

Posts: 2424; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

It looks like everything is scaled smaller on the iPhone X. At least based on the pics posted here. This way all content seems to fit width wise the same as on the 8's. So naturally more content would then fit down at the bottom of the 18/9 phone.

9. libra89

Posts: 2313; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

To me, it looks better on the X for sure.

12. Subie

Posts: 2424; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

I think I'd get used to that 18/9 form factor too. In the near future it may be the only choice anyway. If Univisium gets adopted by the film and tv industry, it will seal the deal.

19. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

I think its better on the older models because the UI will have less padding of the elements to deal with the notch which other iPhone don't have. I think if you compare the UI on the 5.5" Note 4 vs the 5.7" Note 5/7, the differents will also be slight, because the 4 and 7 had the same resoution, but the display was only slightly bigger. 5.5 to 5.8 is not a big gap and the UI won't show much different. In PA's own screenshots, the content on each screen don't match equally, so thus some items look to have more on the iPhone X. But if you put the missing option in on the X, they will pretty much look the same. The settings menu list on the X has items missing vs the iPhone 8+. It would have been better if they simply went 1440 x 2560 at minimum. Then even more would fit , because the resolution being higher would scale things smaller.

14. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

Yes it would be because if the higher resolution. But its not all that high above 1080p. Its basically 1080p+ like the latest Galaxies are 1440p+

25. cmdacos

Posts: 4319; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

Yep. Make font smaller and get more stuff on screen. Amazing Apple!!!!

18. Martin_Cooper

Posts: 1774; Member since: Jul 30, 2013

As cool as this 18:9ish aspect ratios are for web content, they are total garbage for photo and video viewing. And above all inconvenient as f**k how tall and hard to use the top part is.

20. uncle_gadget

Posts: 1050; Member since: Sep 20, 2017

How do photos and video look like garbage? Video. From 16:9 to 18:9 is not a huge change. The video is only slightly wider. It only cuts off a very small amount if the top and bottom of the video. But at least on the Galaxy, you can still view the video in its original 16:9 aspect ratio. I don't know anyone who watches full length movies on smartphones, except maybe on a flight. Most Youtube videos are in resolutions above 1080p, so the resolution of your device doesn't help or hurt them and they are shot videos anyways. How does it effect photos? Whatever resolution you pic for the photo it will remain the same. You don't have to stretch the photo to fit the screen. If the photo was taken at 1440p or higher, then they look perfect on the S8/Note 8 display IMO. Trying to understand your issue. Can you give a bit more detail?

23. kakudiego

Posts: 123; Member since: May 21, 2014

the characters and images are smaller on X!!! really iPhoneArena? a basic comparation and you guys cant do it.

26. iphoneman37

Posts: 53; Member since: Jan 30, 2014

iOS crashed both my moms and my new iPhone lucky just got my 8 plus and apple replaced it .

27. baldilocks

Posts: 1545; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

They cut off parts of the date and times in the X weather screen to make it fit. So, no, it doesn't show as much information. Either way, the 8+ has more screen surface area than the X.

28. ChaoticRage

Posts: 154; Member since: Jan 15, 2016

Loving that 5.8 screen. Beautiful.

31. larryvand

Posts: 12; Member since: Oct 21, 2011

WTH? The iphone X screen font is smaller. Is so small that a person wearing glasses will strain to see the text. So if you have to increase the font on the X to be equivalent to the 8+, you would actually see less. Much less.

32. rowlin

Posts: 50; Member since: Jun 14, 2012

The screen is 19.5:9, not 18:9, too long and skinny with small images and text. Like was said if you increase the text size you will see much less

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