Touch ID vs. Face ID: Which is better?

“YouTube is full of videos showing people tricking Face ID with elaborate masks, but logically, having your face captured and 3D printed is not a realistic concern for the overwhelming majority of iPhone X owners,” AppleInsider writes. “Some AppleInsider viewers have also expressed concern that Face ID might work by putting sunglasses on someone who is sleeping. Those people simply do not understand how Face ID on the iPhone X works.”

“The TrueDepth camera’s infrared sensors penetrate sunglasses, so it can actually see if your eyes or open or closed, and detect where your eyes are looking — even through mirrored sunglasses. This is beneficial for Face ID’s attention awareness feature, which prevents the iPhone from unlocking until it detects that your eyes are looking at your phone. Unlike Face ID, where you’re protected by the attention awareness feature, Touch ID has no such equivalent,” AppleInsider writes. “If you’re not concerned about someone unlocking your iPhone X by holding it up to your face, you can turn the attention detection feature off in Settings. This will help speed up the process of unlocking with Face ID, at the cost of some security.”

“Touch ID only has one step for authentication — scanning your fingerprint. Face ID, meanwhile, has to project infrared dots onto your face, scan those dots, and then authenticate against data stored in the Secure Enclave, a process that adds a small amount of time to the unlock procedure,” AppleInsider writes. “But the way the iPhone X is implemented, namely as a hands-off security solution, means that Face ID can actually be faster in practice than Touch ID.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Face ID.

Take it from those of us who’ve been using Touch ID for 4 years, 2 months, and 20 days and Face ID for the last 27 days: If we could magically dump Touch ID for Face ID on all of our iOS and macOS computers*, we’d do it in a heartbeat!

*Not to mention dumping the Home button on our iOS devices for iPhone X gestures, too.


  1. I agree with Clarence Bodicker. For me, FaceID is faster and more reliable than TouchID:

    —- Its WAY faster every time you use an app that uses TouchID/FaceID. There’s NOTHING to do. Just tap the app and it opens, no extra step.
    —- Same when tapping a notification from the lock screen, or
    —- Same when using Siri from a lock screen.
    —- I find the swipe up quicker than searching for the home button. You can swipe up from anywhere at the bottom. It feels liberating

    I do recommend turning off “Require Attention”, which I have. I have a phone mount in my car, which aims the phone towards my chest, to minimize sub reflection. FaceID has never failed with the phone in that mount.

    For me it is very much like having no security at all, yet more secure than anything we’ve had.

    Regarding reliability: I give tech support to a lot of friends and for a surprising number of them, touchID NEVER works. (maybe they have sweaty hands or are pressing it to hard or too soft, don’t know). FaceID will probably work for them beautifully.

    Also with TouchID on my iPhone7+, I often had problems inadvertently triggering siri, when holding the home button after the press (just forgetfulness). Those problems are gone of course.

    (Off Topic: One other benefit of the new gestures on the iPhoneX. Control panel was almost never reliably accessible from WITHIN apps. For me that failed much more than it worked. Now the control panel can be accessed instantly and from anywhere. Big Win.)

    1. a major pair of plusses: a more physiologically sized handset but still a killer screen size and the entire front of the handset is now generalizable multipurpose screen
      yay no chin or forehead

  2. Face id.. big time. At least for me.
    Touch id in my particular case is pretty unreliable due to my relatively sweaty hands… and then add on top smeared home button..
    More often than not i have to resort to putting in passcode.

    Face id.. no issues

  3. It is a Godsend for me. I have no fingerprints so Touch ID never worked. This works so well and so fast, you’d think there was no security at all until someone else tries to open it.
    Wonderful, Apple!!

  4. I also like attention awareness – good to not have the phone dim when looking at it while have short switch off time. Now no longer have screen live in pocket with phone accidentally making calls

  5. Sometimes I forget to look at the “notch” when I click the side button. When the padlock doesn’t open, I actually talk to the phone and say, “Open up, it’s me!” Of course the phone won’t succumb and goes back to sleep after a few moments. I have to click the side button again and give it the attention it demands for it to unlock. Sheesh! I’ve always been a sucker for high maintenance relationships…

  6. I have to say I’m loving Face ID. This morning it was a crisp 38 degrees as I boosted boarded into work (I live like a mile away from work). When I stopped in at McDonald’s on the way in, I didn’t have to take off my gloves or sunglasses to activate Apple Pay. Face ID is so much better especially in the cold weather when you may have gloves on.

  7. Touch ID wasn’t inconvenient, it didn’t slow me down, what would have stopped them using both to compound the security if you so chose? Does the TouchID module cost that much they could afford to fit one in as well?

  8. A person NEEDS both TouchID & FaceID

    Please KEEP Touch ID!!! PLEASE
    Our state law DOES NOT allow touching a phone in a car, let alone picking one up to fully divert one’s eyes away to make eye contact w/a phone waiting for you to “look” at it, and more States WILL follow!

    Touch ID works FANTASTIC already! I get in my ’15 Accord Hybrid Touring & the iPhone goes in the tray immediately. I DO NOT have to glance at it, I can just feel and press Touch ID & Siri comes on via BlueTooth & everything works GREAT w/my voice. We’ve been blessed with 4 “Newer” Hondas, all 2015 or newer, ONLY 1 has Apple CarPlay. I can even say “Hey Siri” but sometimes the code/Touch ID is necessary. So, if Face ID becomes the only option, it’s a Min. $300 ticket! Plus, I want my wife & daughters Touch IDs so they can open my iPhone. So if anything, have BOTH Touch ID in a car, and Face ID for buying lunch. 😉

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