Apple charts the future of smartphones with new flagship iPhone X

“Apple laid claim to the future of the smartphone yesterday with a 10th anniversary iPhone X, featuring facial recognition unlocking and other refinements, touting the device as the next generation of mobile computing,” AFP reports. “Apple chief executive Tim Cook, speaking at the first event at the new campus theater named for late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, said the newest flagship handset is a milestone for the company a decade after the first iPhone release. ‘Ten years later, it is only fitting that we are here in this place, on this day to reveal a product that will set the path for technology for the next decade,’ Cook said, calling the iPhone X ‘the biggest leap forward since the original iPhone.'”

“The iPhone X has an edge-to-edge 5.8-inch (14.7-centimeter) “super retina” display that has improved resolution, and uses facial recognition to unlock the device,” AFP reports. “Analyst Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategies called the new flagship iPhone X ‘an engineering marvel, especially when compared to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.'”

Apple's iPhone X. Say hello to the future.
Apple’s iPhone X. Say hello to the future.

 
“‘For more than a decade, our intention has been to create an iPhone that is all display,’ Apple chief designer Jony Ive said in a statement. ‘The iPhone X is the realisation of that vision,'” AFP reports. “Jan Dawson of Jackdaw Research called the iPhone X “a far bigger upgrade” than previous devices, but questioned whether Apple was stretching its market too thin. The new iPhone X — pronounced 10 — ‘is going to be the object of desire for many users, and the challenge for Apple will be whether they’ve done enough to make the iPhone 8 range compelling,’ Dawson said in a blog post. ‘What Apple doesn’t want is for people to want the best but not be able to afford it and therefore hold onto their existing phones rather than buying what they consider second best.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The iPhone X’s $999 starting price will sell many millions of iPhone 8 and 8 Plus units while Apple will sell as many iPhone X units as they can assemble, box, and ship. Apple offers different iPhones, at different price points, for different buyers.

35 Comments

  1. This is the place to be underwhelmed? My thoughts:

    1) Glass front & back isn’t new – the first model had it. They ditched it because it scratched & cracked.

    2) What’s all this about “edge to edge” screen? There’s a clear black border around the screen picture area.

    3) What’s this about seamlessless at the edge of the glass? All the closeups show a gap/ridge between the glass and the metal band.

    4) I suspect having that little white/black overlay thingy appear at the bottom of the screen every time I touch it, obscuring content, will get annoying fast.

    5) dragging to/from the edge of the screen is already annoying when the phone is in most cases. This will just add another side of annoying difficulty?

    6) did anyone want a phone that unlocks every time you look at it? While it’s a cool bit of tech and may have applications outside of the pocket-computer space, it seems annoying and unnecessary since you need to put your finger on it anyway.

    Anyone else?

    1. First off, I’m SO glad you won’t buy the iPhone X as it will leave one more for the rest of us.

      I won’t address all your issues, but the unlocking one cannot go unchallenged. It DOESN’T unlock just by looking at it- you still have to swipe up.

      As for “annoying and unnecessary since you need to put your finger on it anyway”- yes, but facial recognition is MUCH more secure than Touch ID. Also, what if you have gloves on? I have gloves that work with a touch screen, but the phone can’t read my fingerprint when my fingers in gloves. The phone CAN see my face, however, when my hands are in gloves.

      1. “Much more secure” than Touch ID? That’s a bit of fake news.

        And I note it didn’t work for Craig Federighi during the demo – failure to work after two tries isn’t “more secure”, it’s “beta”.

        1. Watch the video, it is clear that Face ID simply wasn’t enabled on the first iPhone he tried. Someone must have restarted or powered off the iPhone before the demo so Face ID required the passcode to be enabled. You can actually see that right in the video. It’s just like Touch ID, if I’m turning on my iPhone it requires my passcode to enable Touch ID. So Face ID didn’t fail, it actually worked as it should. Someone at Apple made a mistake getting that iPhone prepped for the demo, to be sure, but it wasn’t Face ID failing. Don’t take my word for it, watch the video.

      2. You need to swipe up to prep the phone for facial unlock don’t you? I’m not certain at this point but if you do, having gloves on won’t be handled any better than with TouchID

    2. Underwhelmed? Yes. By your post.

      You picked 6 things that bother you about the new iPhone, all of which are rather petty and insignificant. And some of which are just plain asinine to gripe about. Especially since I seriously doubt you’ve had the chance to hold one your hand.

      First of all, no one said having a glass back and front was new. It is however “new” compared to last year’s models. And they didn’t ditch it because it was problematic, they ditched it to change the styling of the device. If it was such a huge problem as you seem to suggest, they wouldn’t have made the 4s the same way.

      Second, the gap in the close up shots is magnified. It is actually insignificant when holding it in your hand. Furthermore, seamless doesn’t have to mean “looks”, it also means “feel”, meaning you can’t feel the transition from one material to the other – that makes it seamless.

      Finally, If you don’t think there will be options on how Face ID works, then you’ve never used Touch ID. As there are currently, there will more than likely be options on when and how it functions.

    3. You raise some interesting points and have at least one error:
      The first model of the iPhone did not have a glass black.

      I’m also a little concerned about easily being able to go to the home screen. There’s been something quietly elegant about the home button. No matter how misbehaving an app may be, that home button WORKED. Will we be able to say the same thing about a swipe gesture? Will that always work?

      Regarding unlocking, if I have the phone on a stand in front of me, which I sometimes do while working on my computer, will it auto-unlock when I sit down?

    4. 1. Glass back was always non issue for me with case. Good trade for wireless chargiing
      2, 3, 4…I think you are minimizing very cool technology to make a very cool screen. Don’t forget- they gotta make 100s of millions of these things!
      5. Good point about edge dragging- will definitely need to try before buying cases.
      6. Yes- 99 times out of 100 when i pull my phone out, it is to use it. They may need to add a theatre mode or other lock screen options if that is bothersome to some users.
      In summary looks like many features i will enjoy. I’m most worried about loss of home button. However, on iphone 7 i had no trouble with loss of mechanical button, so im fairly confident there could be software virtual home buttons in some apps if really desired. We shall see…

    5. Let’s go over this point-by-point:

      1) The first iPhone had an aluminum housing. The iPhone 4 and 4s had a glass back. Customers loved the design.

      2) Nit picking. The front of the device is ~95% display.

      3) Like every iPhone since the iPhone 6, there is a thin plastic “gasket” between the display glass and the frame. This plastic part is tapered to match the curve of the phone so that, in profile, the edge of the phone is smoothly rounded. There are small seams at the interface, get over it.

      4) The ears around the top notch and a small strip at the bottom of the display are reserved for OS use. Properly written apps won’t encroach these areas.

      5) Non-sequitur. There is no requirement that the swipe must start off of the display area. In the demos, it appears to work flawlessly.

      6) Touch ID doesn’t work with wet/dirty fingers or when there is dirt on the Touch ID sensor. Face ID will be more reliable.

      7) Are you a troll?

      1. Per #2: isn’t real real benefit of the “no bezels” is having a screen that’s the same size as the Plus, w/o having to carry around a VCR cartridge (D Pogue’s words)? The “ears” bug me, but having the real estate w/o having a board in your pocket is a worth while trade-off. Real men don’t carry phablets anyways (I’m so offensive/bigoted/machismo).

    6. I know you are getting flack for your post but I was expecting more in the way of new, exciting features for the non-X devices. I want the X but I need more than 64GB. That 256Gb version is going cost nearly $2000.00 in Canada after taxes. Egads!

      1. You should not include the VAT in your price comparison. The U.S. price does not include the sales tax or the numerous other taxes/fees that are subsumed under the VAT.

        I wish that the U.S. would go to VAT and simplify a lot of the tax structure.

    7. Wow, a bunch of responses here. I am not a troll, I’m a primarily Mac / iPhone user for many years, and am just calling out what I see as the latest in a line of underwhelming releases and not-quite-true marketing claims.

      The ‘edge-to-edge’ marketing on the screen just seems confusing to me, since there’s a prominent border. So if it’s a screen that goes all the way to the border, it’s… a screen. Like every other screen in the world.

      I have *not* held one, so i can’t speak to the feel, but they are using the word “seamless” while prominently featuring pictures of a gap. Maybe you can’t feel it (did anyone here feel it yesterday?), but then why are they using so many close-up pictures of it?

      And I’m not pooh-poohing the facial recognition / tracking / mapping technology. It sounds really cool and very advanced. Just seems out of place in a phone.

      That face sensing must be most of the difference between the 8 and the X, so is likely responsible for $275 of the $300 price difference.

      So if you were offered an 8 w/ a $300 add-on for FaceID, would you pay it? I suspect most would not.

      1. I am not defending some of the more aggressive responses to your post, PC Apologist. But, face it, some of your complaints bordered on the trivial – edge-to-edge and seamless, for example.

        As far as the facial recognition feature goes, what method would you propose to unlock a phone without a Home button? The touch ID ring was integrated with the Home button. But everyone wanted a bigger display in a smaller form factor, so the chin and the Home button had to go. Ergo, facial recognition.

        I was only able to watch part of the keynote, but the differences between the iPhone X and the 8/8+ go further than facial recognition. For instance, the OLED display.

        You received negative responses because you appeared to be griping about the iPhone X based on insufficient knowledge and judgment.

    8. I believe there are two reasons for negative reviews.

      One, this is not an Android.

      Two, negative reviews help churn AAPL stock. FUD makes money for brokers.

      I will be very happy to turn in my iPhone 7 Plus and get my new iPhone X, hopefully on November 3.

    1. This is probably the (most) stupidest logic we hear frequently in these posts…

      There are dozens and dozens of other smartphone OEM’s across the world, that put out dozens of models of devices every year. Of course a lot of newer technology is going to show up in one of these devices before it does in Apple’s iPhone!

      It’s ridiculous to pick one technology and say that was in device A, then pick another and say that was in device B, and so on. And then say, Apple is falling behind or playing catch up. We ALL know when Apple releases their new iPhones; and it’s once a year. This means that anything “new” over the passed year isn’t going to show up in an iPhone until that time.

    2. Peter: Object to object, I disagree, but for the sake of discussion, let’s say you’re right per hardware. Is Apple playing catch-up per software, ecosystem and re: the absolute deal breaker; security? I don’t think “they are” even close in this realm. Oh, one more thing, how about “customer satisfaction”?

  2. I’m more interested in how they improved facial unlock over the Lumia 950XL and the Surface in order to create the future of smartphones. If very significant, fine. If not, they followed.

    Oh, yes, and let’s not forget the revolutionary Qi wireless charging. About time.

    1. My understanding is the Lumia uses an iris scanner, not facial recognition, so it’s quite a bit different. The Microsoft website actually says you should take off your glasses to set it up.

      Also this bit “To unlock your phone, press the power button. Hold the phone up in front of your face (just like during the setup), and wait for your phone to recognize you. If that doesn’t work, swipe up on the lock screen and enter your sign-in PIN.”

      So it would seem the Lumia is less robust for identification, it scans your iris and you have to hold the phone a certain way. Maybe the Lumia is more flexible in real world use but an iris scanner is not facial recognition, not in the way Apple has implemented Face ID. The idea is not unique, we recognize each other by our faces, it’s obvious, but the technical implementation of it does seem to be very different between the Lumia and the iPhone X.

      1. I wonder which is more secure, Iris scanning or Facial recognition. I imagine sites like twinstrangers.net and findmydoppelganger.net may have more traffic to find facial matches for Persons of Interest. 😛

    2. Apple could have been “first” with a lot of technology, except lesser companies rush out their solutions to beat Apple, but Apple cares enough about their products not to introduce features until they have actually worked out a good solution/implementation. So none of this “they weren’t first” nonsense phases me in the least. Unlike well-known copy thieves, just because Apple introduces a feature after someone else does not mean Apple cribbed it.

      1. In addition, any technology included in the iPhone 8 and X have been in work in the Apple labs for years, in most cases. First out the door to retail is not necessarily first to apply in prototype. And “first” means relatively little, anyway. “Best” is more important and magical is the goal.

        1. There’s no such thing as magic. Magic is an illusion, I like truth.

          Now… Apple is very wise to let the pioneers get the arrows in their backs and then find out how not to get shot. That’s shrewd and smart and good business to be sure. “Charting” it is not.

    3. Of course Apple improved facial biometric unlocking. Face ID is using 3D mapping and AI to make the system highly secure while making it simple and reliable.

      Older facial biometric systems simply used image capture. This approach has been shown to give both false positives and false negatives.

  3. looking through the various MDN articles today and yesterday I find a whole bunch of Apple hating trolls.

    there’s a guy Marlo who keeps posting the SAME criticism (like copy and paste) about ‘Android had it first’ in a bunch of different articles.

    Also anybody who says anything good about Apple’s new products get down voted.

    Trolls if the new iPhones are SOOOOOOO useless why do you all bother? IT’LL DIE BY ITSELF (like half a dozen Android companies every year… like latest HTC wants to sell it’s money losing phone division ) . The fact that android loves spend so much time here shows that they are unsure and need to troll to boost themselves (over their doubts of owning their ‘malware infested garage burning banned on airplanes’ android crock).

    I’ve NEVER gone to any of the dozens of Android sites to troll, I’ve just zero interest in crap. It’s basically waste of my time , but apparently the REVERSE isn’t true for Android fanboys … and that informs us a lot!

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.