iPhone X vs. Google Pixel 2 XL: Which flagship phone is a best?

Two of a best phones we can buy, Apple’s iPhone X and Google’s Pixel 2 XL have lightning quick speeds, well-developed cameras and high-end hardware. As a marquee inclination of Silicon Valley’s largest tech companies, it’s usually healthy to review them head-to-head: design, camera, performance, program and altogether value.

No phone will ever accommodate 100 percent of anyone’s needs and, as good as they are, they any come with their possess set of pros and cons. But if you’re determining between a two, this relapse should make it easier to pick.

Also keep in mind that successors to both phones are entrance soon. The next iPhone X is approaching to be announced some time in September, while Google is strongly suspected to announce a Pixel 3 and 3 XL in October. So if we can wait a bit longer and wish even some-more options to consider, reason off until October.


Design: Pixel 2 XL’s pointy shade or a iPhone X’s glorious looks?

The Pixel 2 XL looks a lot like 2016’s model, that includes a potion shade and a plastic-coated aluminum physique that isn’t quite appealing (though a physique does make it reduction expected to break or moment if dropped).


The Pixel 2 XL (left) and a iPhone X.

James Martin/CNET

The iPhone X, on a other hand, has a singular pattern that sets it detached from past iPhones. It has superthin bezels and no home button. It also has a black nick that sits during a tip of a screen. That’s a permanent underline here, distinct some Android phones that let we censor a notch).

As for their displays, a iPhone X has a 5.8-inch shade while a Pixel 2 XL has a crook 6-inch arrangement with a aloft fortitude and a aloft pixel density.

Both phones have OLED screens and both are famous to humour from burn-in. For Google, this emanate brought a guaranty process to light, that a association eventually broadened to accommodate burn-in. Apple also concurred this problem, noting that it engineered a display to “be a best in a attention in shortening a effects of OLED ‘burn-in.'” Its Apple Care process doesn’t state any specific coverage for burn-in, however.

In addition, both phones are H2O resistant, that is good for additional protection. But conjunction one has a headphone jack, and you’ll need to use wireless headphones or a dongle to listen to music.

Winner: With a higher-resolution display, a Pixel 2 XL wins this for me. But if we’re articulate about altogether character and sleekness, a iPhone X has a top hand.


Camera: The best of a best

The Pixel 2 XL has one of a best cameras out there, and that still binds loyal scarcely a year after a launch. Even with only a singular rear-camera lens, it can lift of bokeh-style mural shots beautifully. Its HDR+ extended underline is higher during digest scenes with wily lighting and opposite exposures, and it handles low-light environments excellently.

In addition, a Pixel 2 XL integrates gyro-based electronic picture stabilization with a visual picture stabilization (OIS) for photos and video. In a end, footage available on a Pixel 2 XL is super-smooth and steady.

Meanwhile, a iPhone X has a dual-rear camera (one wide-angle and one telephoto) for transparent visual zooming and mural pictures. Both lenses also have OIS. 

Testing out a cameras on a iPhone X and a Pixel 2 (which has a same camera as a 2 XL).


While this advantage is tough to discern between well-lit cinema from both phones, we can unequivocally see a advantages on a iPhone X’s photos during full resolution, or with cinema taken in low lighting. Also, when recording zoomed-in video, a iPhone Xs’s dual-OIS setup is generally beneficial, as videos are noticeably some-more stable.

If you’re a fan of selfies, both a iPhone X’s depth-sensing front-facing camera and Pixel 2 XL’s program can constraint mural photos too. However, cinema don’t demeanour as well-spoken as portraits taken with their particular back cameras.

For some-more information, check out a two(!) camera comparisons (the Pixel 2 and 2 XL have a same camera):

Winner: Both phones take good photos; we can’t go wrong with possibly choice. The iPhone X is a best all-around phone to grab-and-go when you’re gnawing pics and recording video. But a Pixel 2 XL’s illusory energetic operation takes shining still-photos.


Performance: iPhone X is faster, yet a Pixel 2 XL lasts longer

The iPhone X has a disdainful A11 Bionic processor, while a Pixel 2 XL has Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 chipset. When we ran 3DMark’s Ice Storm Unlimited and Geekbench 4’s single- and multi-core benchmarks, a iPhone X absolutely kick out a Pixel 2 XL on each test. (Keep in mind yet that benchmarks can be optimized depending on a OS.)

That doesn’t meant a Pixel 2 XL is a slump or anything. For daily tasks like scrolling by web pages, opening a camera, and typing out messages on a keyboard, we couldn’t discern a disproportion between a two. But when it comes down to a numbers, a iPhone X wins by a longshot.

Battery life, however, is a opposite story. The iPhone X has wireless charging and during a battery exam for continual video playback on Airplane mode, it lasted 11.45 hours. That’s shorter than a times we clocked in for a iPhone 8 and 8 Plus (which were 13.5 and 13.75 hours, respectively). But, a tests run by Tom’s Guide and the Wall Street Journal found a iPhone X battery life to run somewhere in between a 8 and and a Plus, so keep in mind user knowledge with a iPhone X varies.  In a same test, a Pixel 2 XL lasted longer during 13.83 hours.

Winner: If we wish lightning-fast estimate speeds, a iPhone X has it. But if we wish a longer-lasting battery, go with a Pixel 2 XL.


Both a Pixel 2 XL (left) and iPhone X have lightning-quick processors.

James Martin/CNET

Software: Are we already on iOS or Android?

A vast partial of what phone you’ll buy depends on a ecosystem you’re gentle with. Apple’s iPhone X runs iOS 11 and has a digital voice partner Siri. iOS also facilities syncing iMessages opposite inclination (a building underline that iOS users love) and Apple Pay too.

In addition, since a iPhone X’s front-facing camera can clarity abyss and map faces, it has a few program tricks that other iPhones don’t. This Face ID underline can clear your phone and sanction payments with FaceID instead of a fingerprint. It can also emanate fun charcterised emojis that counterpart your facial movements.

The Pixel 2 XL runs Android 8.0 Oreo out of a box, yet was one of a initial phones to accept a latest Android 9.0 Pie refurbish (a large advantage of Google-branded phones). The Pixel has a higher Google Assistant and Google Lens, that calls adult information about a universe around we regulating a camera and Photos app. It’s generally accessible when we wish to find out some-more about what’s in front of you. It won’t be disdainful to a Pixel 2 phones perpetually though, as it will hurl out to other Android phones later.


When it comes to volume paid-per-gig, what phone gives we more?

James Martin/CNET

Value: iPhone X costs some-more adult front

If you’re meddlesome in removing a 64GB phone, a Pixel 2 XL is particularly a improved value, starting out during about $150, £200 or AU$180 reduction than a iPhone X. In a end, that means you’ll keep some-more money in your wallet for a first-tier storage amount.

But when it comes to a higher-tiered memory option, you’ll indeed get some-more crash for your sire with a iPhone X as distant as inner storage concerned. With 128GB on a Pixel 2 XL, you’ll have to cough adult $949, £899 and AU$1,549. Meanwhile, you’ll compensate $1,149, £1,149 and AU$1,829 for twice that volume (256GB) on an iPhone X. That might be some-more expensive, yet in terms of volume paid-per-GB, a iPhone X is some-more cost efficient.

iPhone X and Pixel 2 XL cost comparison

Apple iPhone X

Google Pixel 2 XL


$999 (64GB), $1,149 (256GB)

$849 (64GB), $949 (128GB)


£999 (64GB), £1,149 (256GB)

£799 (64GB), £899 (128GB)


AU$1,579 (64GB), AU$1,829 (256GB)

AU$1,399 (64GB), AU$1,549 (128GB)

Which one’s right for you?

With a crook screen, glorious camera and longer-lasting battery, I’d go with a Pixel 2 XL — generally if I’m eyeing a first-tier 64GB option. We also consider it’s the best Android to switch to if you’re a long-time iPhone user.

But if you’re already low within a iOS ecosystem, we don’t devise on switching and have a bill for it, by all means go for a iPhone X. Its illusory dual-camera setup, lush looks and available and secure FaceID will really keep we adult to speed with destiny iPhone developments from Apple.

iPhone X and Pixel 2 XL spec comparison

iPhone X

Google Pixel 2 XL

Display size, resolution

5.8-inch; 2,436×1,125 pixels

6-inch; 2,880×1,440 pixels

Pixel density

458 ppi

538 ppi

Dimensions (inches)

5.7×2.79×0.30 in.

6.2×3.0x0.3 in.

Dimensions (millimeters)



Weight (ounces, grams)

6.14 oz.; 174g

6.17 oz..; 175g

Mobile software

iOS 11

Android 8.0 Oreo


Dual 12-megapixel


Front-facing camera



Video capture




Apple A11 Bionic

Qualcomm Snapdragon 835


64GB, 256GB

64GB, 128GB




Expandable storage




2,716mAh (Apple doesn’t endorse this)


Fingerprint sensor

None (Face ID around TrueDepth camera)

Back of phone




Headphone jack



Special features

Water-resistant (IP67); wireless charging; Face ID 3D unlock, Animoji

Water-resistant (IP67); Active Edge launches Google Assistant; total cloud storage; Daydream VR-ready

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