In a recent interview Apple’s chief designer Jony Ive revealed the technology behind the newly released iPhone X had been in development since 2012. Essentially that means that while we were still playing around with the 5S, checking out features like fingerprint recognition Apple was already working on the X and FaceID. Now that the X is finally here, what do we know about it?
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IPhone X was announced on september 12 2017 alongside the 8 and 8 plus models. The X is clearly meant to be the deluxe model of the current generation of iPhones. It’s significantly larger, has more features and comes with a hefty price tag of 999$ making it the most expensive iPhone model to ever hit the market. The first clear difference is the new design, the home button is gone and now the screen covers the entire front of the device. The new 5.8 inch screen is a significant upgrade over the 4.7 inch screens found in previous versions and is even larger than the 5.5 inch 1080p screen of plus models. But size is not the only advantage the X has over its counterparts, the new OLED display also offers brighter resolution, better contrast and uses less battery power.
Display isn’t the only thing that’s different. On the inside the X has been fitted with a new six-core A11 CPU with an integrated Apple designed three-core GPU and a Neural Engine used for Face ID, Animoji and other machine learning tasks. The phone also has three separate cameras. Two on the back, one a 12 megapixel wide angle with face detection, high dynamic range support, capable of capturing 4k video at 60fps, the other with a telephoto lens with 2x optical/10x digital zoom and a third one on the front, a 7-megapixel TrueDepth camera with HDR, face detection and Animoji support, capable of capturing 1080p video at 30fps.
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Hardware upgrades have opened new possibilities for software innovation. The new cameras are used for FaceID the facial recognition system that was the focal point of the X’s marketing campaign. The previous authentication system, Touch ID relied on the home button equipped with a fingerprint scanner to recognize the user. Now the traditional home button found on all previous iPhones is gone and along with it the fingerprint scanner. The new system simply uses the camera to scan the users face and recognize touch-based gestures. The X also uses wireless charging which Apple plans to expand with their AirPower wireless charging pad, which will be able to charge multiple devices at the same time. The new hardware along with the new operating system iOS 11 allows using ARKit to create augmented reality apps like the immensely popular Pokemon GO game. We can only wonder what developers will be able to achieve with the new tools iPhone X has provided them with.
The iPhone X is definitely brimming with new possibilities. It has made waves in the tech world with developers racing to figure out creative ways to make use of its innovative features. Only time will tell what they’ll come up with and what revolutionary new apps we’ll see. Just like the slogan says, say hello to the future.