Ten years later – at a building named after the late Apple co-founder – his successor Tim Cooktook the stage to introduce the iPhone X, the phone that he and Apple believe will define the roadmap of the smartphone industry for the next 10 years.
The iPhone X – pronounced iPhone 10 – represents the most radical change to Apple’s design speech in the iPhone’s ten-year history, as almost the entire face of the phone is now dominated by the display. Save for a little ‘notch’ in the top of the front edge – more on that later – the iPhone X has pretty thin bezels on all sides, though you would not call it ‘bezel-less’. This means that the brand new, most-expensive iPhone-ever looks nothing like its predecessors, though the overall design is pretty similar to what we have seen on a few Android phones, both with and without that topnotch.
In a body that is smaller than the iPhone 7 Plus, Apple has packaged a display which at 5.8-inches is its largest yet on a smartphone. Belatedly, Apple has caught up with all the Android makers when it comes to having a screen-to-body ratio that is befitting a smartphone shipping in 2017. That’s not all – yet another piece of tech noticed hitherto in smartphones by the likes of Samsung (and others) now makes its iPhone-debut.
OLED panels are seen on Apple-made phone for the first time, ensuring that the all-display front of the iPhone X really catches your attention. At the launch event, Apple said it believes OLED technology is finally at a place where it is able to offer brightness levels, wide colour support, and colour accuracy that the company desires. The ‘Super Retina’ display on the iPhone X ticks all the right boxes when it comes to specifications: 1125×2436 pixels, 458ppi display, Dolby Vision, HDR10, True Tone, and a one million-to-one comparison ratio. In regard to performance, the iPhone X display is as good as we have seen on any smartphone.
The price you pay for this all-display front is with the reduction of the iconic home button along with the embedded Touch ID detector, which is central to the way we interact with our iPhones since their respective introductions. Instead, you get Face ID, which is allowed thanks to an array of detectors in that notch we spoke about earlier. Apple says this means Face ID cannot be fooled using your picture, or maybe a face mask that would trick most humans.
Although we didn’t get to examine Face ID using our own face in the hands-on area at the Steve Jobs Theater on Tuesday, based on the demos we saw following the event, this first-generation unlocking technique is definitely slower than Touch ID, which is hardly a surprise. A fairer comparison would perhaps be with face-unlocking implementations of other OEMs, and Face ID seems to ace that test. More when we place the iPhone X via the paces during our review though.
A fun new iPhone X feature that the TrueDepth camera system enables is called Animoji. This lets you send messages in which emojis can take your own face and voice. While pleasure, it will be interesting to see if Animojis continue to be utilized when the novelty wears off. There are additional software touches that are different about the iPhone X – you swipe up in the bottom edge to mimic the functionality of this home button; swipe and briefly hold to bring up the multitasking view; and slide down in the right of the notch to bring the Control Center into view.
As you would expect, the iPhone X comes with a whole lot of different enhancements: improved cameras with Quad-LED True Tone flash on the rear, the A11 Bionic SoC that is the fastest-ever smartphone chip on paper, stereo speakers, dust and water resistance, wireless charging, and much more that we will test in detail during the next few days. Stay tuned to Gadgets 360 for a review of this iPhone X.