The forthcoming iPhone X may have caught most people's attention at the Apple launch event, but the new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are also worthy of consideration. The updated versions of last year’s iPhone 7 and 7 Plus models pack new and impressive features with the same rough design that dates back to iPhone’s sixth series. On Friday, the eight generation model and its Plus iteration were officially made available in stores across the world.

Key features

The improved design on the iPhone 8 line includes the addition of the True Tone technology that was present in the 10.5-inch iPad Pro.

This new feature automatically adjusts the screen according to the lighting present in the room, which results in more accurate colors. Both phones run under the A11 Bionic, Apple’s most advanced processor. It allows users to maximize a fluid gaming experience as well as advanced augmented reality applications.

As for the camera, these smartphones continue to push the boundaries. Both models offer optical image stabilization, which helps photos take clear shots despite the instability. Also, Apple introduced a new option that will allow users to change the lighting effects on the subject. Some effects include adjusting the lighting on the face, creating a black and white portrait, and turning the whole background black.

The back of the phone is covered with a shiny glass back panel that enables the support for wireless charging, which is one of the biggest internal changes. The inductive wireless charging would not have worked with the previous aluminum shell of the previous models. It works by simply placing the phone on a charging pad, and it can be left to charge.

Further, it uses the Qi charging standard.

Apple is also proud of the fact that this is the first smartphone designed for augmented reality (AR), which is calibrated in its cameras. There is also a new gyroscope and accelerometer to allow an improved motion tracking. There may be no head jack, but a set of Apple earbuds make up for it.

Just like the iPhone 7, the earbuds still work either over the lightning port or an adapter.

Price and availability

With some people holding out for the high-end iPhone X, the iPhone 8 lineup is also making some buzz. For a 64GB storage, the smaller model sells for as low as $699 while the 8 Plus starts at $799. Both models also have a larger capacity that goes up to 256GB with the iPhone 8 being sold at $849 and the Plus version at $949. Pre-orders have gone live since September 15, but both phones are now available for sale in the U.S. and international markets.