While the iPhone X is the most advanced flagship Apple has released, it’s not the best iPhone you can buy, at least according to product testing and research publication Consumer Reports.
The outlet published the results from its extensive iPhone X testing on Tuesday. And while the popular publication called the Apple OLED flagship an “innovative device with a fantastic camera and beautiful display,” the iPhone X also lost to the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus in a full comparison.
Interestingly, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus fared better in Consumer Reports’ comparison due to one possibly overlooked factor: durability. According to the publication, the iPhone 8 proved to be “hardier” when subjected to drops and damage.
“We tumbled three samples of the iPhone X. The first was fine after 50 drops, but the glass on the back was significantly cracked after 100,” the publication wrote. “The other two phones ended up with malfunctioning displays after 50 drops. Though the front glass didn’t break, several bright green bars stretched across the screens from top to bottom.”
That’s an interesting result, considering several other outlets have found that the iPhone X was actually more durable than the iPhone 8.
Other drop tests seem to indicate that the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus were more durable than competing Samsung Galaxy devices. The iPhone X performed about as well as the Galaxy S8 and S8+ in drop testing, CR said. Of course, as the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and X are the first glass-constructed devices that Apple has produced since 2011, they’re all more prone to breakage than their predecessors with aluminum chassis.
In addition, Consumer Reports had some issues with the iPhone X’s battery life. In its testing, the outlet found that the iPhone X lasted an average of 19.5 hours, compared to 26 hours for the Samsung Galaxy S8 and 21 hours for the iPhone 8 Plus.
Still, the outlet noted that the iPhone X’s rear camera is the “highest-rated smartphone camera” it has ever tested. In addition, the publication praised the convenience of Face ID, as well as the iPhone X’s “beautiful OLED display.”
While the iPhone X easily made its way into Consumer Reports’ list of Top 10 Rated Smartphones, the publication concluded that “other phones are tougher and can operate longer on a charge.”
The Galaxy S8 and S8+ claimed the top two spots on CR’s top 10 list, with the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone 8 taking third and fourth, respectively. The iPhone X, due to the aforementioned flaws, was ranked ninth overall. Although the publication notes that all of the devices in its top 10 list are only separated by a few points.
“If not for the damage in that durability test, the iPhone X would have come in ahead of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus,” said Richard Fisco, Consumer Reports’ head of smartphone testing.