The iPhone X vs iPhone 7 – Which One Should You Choose?

The iPhone 7 and iPhone X are both currently among the most popular iPhone models available. Both phones are also much cheaper now than they were at their launch. In many stores, the iPhone 7 is more than 50% cheaper than the iPhone X, which is understandable since it is also one year older than the iPhone X.

So, should you upgrade to the iPhone X or choose the more affordable iPhone 7? Let’s go over some of the differences and see which one is the right one for you.

Which One Looks Better?

When it comes to looks, the iPhone X is a standout. Like the new Galaxy models, the iPhone X has opted to focus on screen-size-first design. The side bezels (4.13mm) have been all but eliminated and the smartphone has a screen-only feel. The 5.8-inch OLED display is a little larger than the 7 Plus’ display, but the phone itself is much smaller, which means you get a big screen without having a big phone.

In addition to dropping the somewhat bulky bezels of the iPhone 7 and 8 models, the iPhone X has completely abandoned the home button. This means that the only non-screen elements on the front of the phone are the ultra-slim bezels and a notch for the front camera and some sensors. Losing the home button was a bold move by Apple and was met with mixed reactions; some love it, some don’t. But if the screen-to-body ratio is an important selling point for you, the iPhone X’s ratio is one of the best on the market: 82%.

The back of the device is a throwback to the iPhone 4 released back in 2011. Apple has dropped the aluminum back (which it used for the iPhone 6) for a glass one. This adds a little weight to the device and introduces some durability concerns. Apple states that the top quality glass is hardy enough for consumers. Naturally, it’s not as durable as aluminium but the glass black is more conductive, which enables fast and easy wireless charging. The glass also looks incredibly beautiful and glossy, which some consumers have been missing since the iPhone 4.

The iPhone 7, on the other hand, has many of the same design features as the iPhone 6. You may even find it difficult to see any striking differences from a design perspective between the iPhone 6, iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models.

As we have pointed out in a previous post, the iPhone 7 is still one of the best smartphones on the market. On top of this, its design makes it a little bit more durable and drop proof than the iPhone X.

Summary: The iPhone 7 has an aluminium back and thick bezels. The iPhone X has ultra-thin bezels, no home button and a glossy glass back, which enable a larger screen size and wireless charging.

What about screen quality and screen size?

The iPhone X has a slightly larger screen than the iPhone 7, but its screen-to-body ratio is much better. Here’s a comparison:

  • iPhone X: 5.65 x 2.79 x 0.30 in (143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm) and 174 g. Screen size: 5.8 in.
  • iPhone 7: 5.44 x 2.64 x 0.28 in (138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1 mm) and 138 g. Screen size: 4.7 in.
  • iPhone 7 Plus: 6.23 x 3.07 x 0.29 in (158.2 x 77.9 x 7.3 mm) and 188 g. Screen size: 5.5 in.

So, with the iPhone X you’re getting a larger screen without a larger body, thanks to the ultra-thin bezels and no home button.

When it comes to display quality, the iPhone X is leaps and bounds ahead of the iPhone 7. The new OLED screens are crystal clear and have an insanely good contrast ratio. The iPhone 7 has a 1,400:1 ratio, while the iPhone X has a whopping 1,000,000:1 ratio. This means the iPhone X’s contrast ratio is 715 times better – unlocking a ton of cool features.

The iPhone X lets you stream HDR content on Netflix and Amazon, as well as some absolutely stunning HDR YouTube videos.

The iPhone X is also the first Apple model without an LCD screen. The 2436×1125 pixel resolutionOLED screen is, without a doubt, the most attractive display Apple has ever produced. And it’s sure to stand out for years to come.

Summary: The iPhone 7 has a 4.7-inch LCD screen with a 1,400:1 contrast ratio. The iPhone X sports a 5.8-inch OLED screen with an outstanding 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and has a better screen-to-body ratio.

Size: iPhone X vs iPhone 7

The iPhone 7 isn’t a huge smartphone by any means. That being said, it’s definitely a size upgrade compared to some of the older iPhone models, such as the iPhone 5. The iPhone X is slightly larger than the iPhone 7 and almost 40 grams heavier due to its stylish yet heavy back glass.

Some people like a sturdier phone while others prefer a lighter, more delicate model. The iPhone X may have a slightly more fragile back glass, but its weight and smooth finish make it feel like a hardy device.

Summary: The iPhone 7 is slightly smaller than the iPhone X and weighs only 137 grams, while the iPhone X weighs 174 grams.

Speed: iPhone X vs iPhone 7

The iPhone 7 is anything but sluggish. Benchmarks kept the iPhone 7 neck and neck with most Android models until the iPhone X came along – which is by far the best-performing Apple smartphone released.

Let’s start with the Apple A11 “Bionic” chipset. It has a Six-Core CPU and a Six Core GPU with 3GB of RAM. This gives you around 30% more GPU than the iPhone 7 and around 25% more CPU. This means you will be able to multitask by about 70% faster than with the iPhone 7. And it gives you all of this while simultaneously running the 2436×1125 pixel touchscreen, cameras, sensors and so on. 

To top it all off, the Neural AI in the chipset can produce 600 billion operations per second, which is used for the iPhone X’s advanced facial recognition technology.

Summary: The iPhone 7 sports the A10 fusion chipset, which is around 70% slower than the A11 Bionic in the iPhone X. But keep in mind that both of these chipsets are pacy and can handle the needs of the vast majority of smartphone users.

Is the iPhone X’s battery life better than the iPhone 7’s?

On the surface, the iPhone X’s battery isn’t too different from the iPhone 7’s. Both of them can handle around 13 hours of video and about 12 hours of internet use. The iPhone X beats the iPhone 7 when it comes to endurance tasks like talk time and audio play. But the real shakeup here isn’t the battery life itself – it’s how it charges.

The iPhone X has fast charging and wireless charging – both of which make charging and using your smartphone a breeze. Fast charging lets you charge your battery halfway full in 30 minutes. And wireless charging means you don’t have to plug your iPhone into the nearest wall in order to charge it.

Summary: The iPhone 7 and iPhone X both have good batteries that can last a whole day. The iPhone X’s battery has a little more power. And it offers fast charging and wireless charging to improve ease-of-use and charging versatility.

Front camera: iPhone X vs iPhone 7

Let’s be honest: Apple has virtually eliminated the need for DSLR cameras outside of professional photography. And that trend is definitely continuing with the iPhone X.

On paper, the iPhone X and iPhone 7 have identical front cameras. Both have a f/2.2 aperture and 1080p video resolution. They also both have a 7MP sensor. However, it’s not all about the numbers. The iPhone X has the Neural AI of the A11 chip, which is an incredibly powerful neural tool for taking photos. Not only does it power Face ID (discussed later) but it can also automatically detect optimal lighting for portraits.

Furthermore, the iPhone X includes Animoji – a fun and unique feature that allows you to place emojis in the world that mimic your expressions and voice.

Summary: The iPhone 7 has an incredible front camera that still makes an impact in today’s market. But the iPhone X has a chipset that gives it that little bit of extra required to take exceptional photos.

Rear camera: iPhone X vs iPhone 7

The iPhone X features a dual back camera whereas the iPhone 7 does not. And likewise, both of the cameras are capable of taking professional-quality photos.

Again, on paper, the differences between the iPhone 7 and iPhone X are small. The iPhone X’s telephoto lens on the back has a slightly better aperture (f/2.4). But it’s not a dealbreaker for low light levels. Once again, however, numbers aren’t everything. The iPhone X has a faster 12 megapixel sensor, an image signal processor (ISP) that makes the end result much better than the iPhone 7, and an impressive array of filters and image stabilisation features.

In short, the iPhone X takes better pictures. But the iPhone 7 is still competitive in today’s market.

Summary: The iPhone 7 has an outstanding camera. But the iPhone X beats it with an impressive 12 MP sensor, Apple’s first ISP technology, superior image stabilisation and better pictures in low light.

Face ID?

The iPhone X’s new Face ID feature replaces the Touch ID feature of the iPhone 7, which is now gone due to the removal of the home button. The incredible Face ID security measure can instantly recognise your face via billions of processes per second and uses your face to unlock your device. And it is still able to recognise you when you’re wearing a hat or have gotten a fresh new haircut.

While Apple isn’t the first company to launch Face ID (Galaxy took a run at it), it is the first one to do it well. Thanks to the depth-sensing camera, you can’t trick the sensor with a photo. And it’s really good at recognising faces past any potential barriers like sunglasses. These are the things that have been missing from Android devices with Face ID, which is another reason that Apple is still the way to go.

Some users will definitely miss Touch ID, which wasn’t dependent on AI. But Face ID works, which is what ultimately matters.

Summary: The iPhone 7 has Touch ID, which recognises your fingerprint to unlock the device. The iPhone X has Face ID which recognises your face to unlock the device.

Our opinion

Choose the iPhone X if:

  • You want better performance
  • You’re looking for the best possible photos
  • You want the OLED touchscreen
  • You want a larger screen
  • You like the bezel-less look
  • You want a brand new Apple experience
  • You like some of the quirky features like Animoji

Choose the iPhone 7 if:

  • You want to spend less money 
  • You don’t want to use Face ID
  • You like the home button
  • You’re upgrading from an older iPhone and want a similar (but better) user experience