The iPhone 8’s Battery Life Isn’t Quite What We Hoped, But We’ll Take It


After months of rumors and leaks, the new iPhones are finally here. The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are the somewhat satisfying, if predictable, follow-ups to the 7 and 7 Plus. We're getting everything from a nicer camera (including a front-facing portrait mode for the ultimate selfies) to an improved battery life. But exactly how long does the iPhone 8 battery last? It's not as much as you would think -- but it's still a slight improvement.

Apple announced today that the iPhone 8's battery life is similar to the 7 and 7 Plus. The 8 Plus, on the other hand, does have a significantly better battery life than the 7 and 7 Plus -- up to 21 hours of talk time, 13 hours of internet, 14 of video playback, and 60 of audio playback. But the 8 starts at $699, whereas the Plus starts at $799. That's a significant price difference and handily puts the better battery out of reach for many.

But both the 8 and 8 Plus have wireless charging capabilities. Additionally, they're fast-charge capable, which, Apple claims, means it can charge up to 50 percent in 30 minutes.

Wireless charging works by creating electromagnetic fields which are exchanged between the inductive surface (the charger) and the phone, according to The Telegraph. That's why the 8 and 8 Plus are glass instead of aluminum -- it's easier to wirelessly charge a device through glass than it is through metal. And if you're like, That's not practical, what if I need to borrow a charger, you psycho?!, well, I have good news for you. There is even an app called the Aircharge Qi Wireless Charging Locations, which will find wireless charging pads for you to use.


One drawback to wireless charging: it's not as fast as traditional charging. That said, if Apple's new "fast-charge" technology works as promised, your phone could go from 1 percent doom to 50 percent in the time it takes to get ready for work in the morning.

It's a bit disappointing to hear that there'll be no actionable difference between the 7, 7 Plus, and the 8 when it comes to talk, internet, audio, and video time. Apple says that both phones get up to 14 hours of talk time, 12 hours of internet, 13 hours of video playback, and 40 hours of audio playback.

But that "up to" is the key to those estimates, because tech review websites have had a wholly different experience with the 7.

Tech Radar, for example, said the 7 was "a really poor battery experience." Despite how quickly the phone could charge, charging was necessary before day's end on a typical workday and by 3:30 on a weekend day where the phone was being used more heavily.

We suspect the 8 will be a similar experience once user reviews start coming out, though there is the added benefit of "fast-charging" and wireless charging. And some people are not happy.

The iPhone X, on the other hand, will have a substantially better battery life than past iterations of the iPhone -- up to 21 hours of talk, according to Apple. It seems that Apple focused more on the X -- which costs a whopping $999 -- than the 8.

At the very least, charging quickly and almost painlessly will be an improvement from praying you remembered your charger and hoping that there would be an outlet at the booth you and your friends were sharing for brunch.

Instead, you can slap your wireless charger on the table and just lay that iPhone down to do its thing. Though, it's probably best not to throw around such delicate technology. And, hey, technically, wireless chargers also have to be plugged in. And then  you have to leave your phone flat on the charging surface, or it won't work. And they can be pretty pricy -- upwards of $100.

Oh well. Can't win 'em all, I guess. In the mean time, you can pry my 6 from my cold, dead hands.