It’s been rumored for months. Leaks have been everywhere. And now it’s finally here: The iPhone X. Oh, and a bunch of other iPhones too! Here’s everything you need to know.
Calling it the “iPhone Ten,” Apple has debuted a “Super Retina” display, with 2.7 million pixels and an edge-to-edge screen, the highest resolution on an iPhone. It supports HDR, as well. It does indeed do away with the Home button, but now you can just tap it to wake it up, which, hopefully, will be able to sense being in your pocket. You then swipe up from the bottom to go home. The gestures Apple showed off are fairly intuitive, but we imagine it’ll take some of us some getting used to.
Apple also confirmed “Face ID,” wherein your iPhone knows your face and will only unlock if you look at it, using an infrared camera and a dot array to pick out the exact geography of your face. If the face looking at your phone isn’t yours, or if you’re even looking away or keeping your eyes closed, your phone won’t open. Of course, this means Apple knows, literally, exactly who you are, although that data is only stored on your phone. They’ve promised it won’t be stored on remote servers.
They claim Face ID can adapt to subtle changes, which users will likely put to the test, and even used Hollywood quality masks to try and fool it. Apple claims there’s a one in a million chance, literally, of Face ID getting fooled. That will still no doubt inspire some privacy questions, not to mention what might happen if you suffer facial injury. And, for that matter, that your phone is constantly monitoring your face is a bit… odd. Still, this is incredibly advanced technology, and if Apple can really pull it off, it’ll be a coup. And yes, it works with Apple Pay. You can officially pay for things with a selfie. Of course, the passcode isn’t going anywhere; in fact, the live demo had it pop up first thing.
On the goofier end of things, you can use this software to control emoji with your face. So if you want a nodding panda emoji, you can now make it with ease, and yes, you can customize the poo emoji. You can even send an animated message with the emoji, complete with your voice. You can also layer masks over your face in selfies, which we sure will not be abused.
Apple has also increased the battery life, to two hours longer than the iPhone 7. So when can you get it? Preorders open on October 27th, with the phone shipping November 3rd. It’ll start at $999.
The iPhone 8 And 8 Plus
For the technical heavy lifting, Apple turned to the iPhone 8. Coming in silver, space grey, and gold (sorry, pink fans), the iPhone 8 has both front and back glass panels, with a laser-welded chassis holding it in place. It’s microscopically sealed to hold off water and dust. They’ve got Retina displays, of course. The speakers have been upgraded, with deeper base and 25% more volume. Apple is also talking up their new processor, A11 Bionic. They’re claiming it’s the smartest chip ever put in a smartphone, but true or not, it’s 70% faster than the previous A10 processor, plus 30% faster graphics with the on-board GPU, so you’re going to notice a difference in performance. The glass back also allows wireless charging, finally delivering a long-requested feature. The wireless tech is from Qi, and will be licensed through third parties.
The 8 also has noise reduction, finally improving the “phone” part. Photography wise, there’s a larger and more powerful sensor with better dynamic range and lower noise. The 8 Plus has even more photography power. The iPhone has recently been showing off its photography chops, and fans will likely be happy it’s just getting better. The Plus also has advanced digital lighting effects for Portrait Mode, and create a “depth map” that allows you to highlight portraits. It’s not a filter; you can change the lighting effect on photos after the fact. Video has also been upgraded. It’s now 4K, and Apple is claiming they’ve got the most advanced compression tools to optimize how it looks and keep it crammed into a small photo. Slow motion has been upgraded to 240 frames a second.
Most interesting is the augmented reality features. Each iPhone is balanced with ARKit to make it easy to use, and never has Pokemon Go looked so great! In seriousness, though, Apple showed off apps that let you better track what’s going on at sports games, spot constellations in the sky, and playing video games. The game they showed off, Machines, laid a game board on top of a table and let players wander around it, looking at the level from different angles. It’s impressive, although gamers have been controlling the camera with their thumb for years.
The 8 will start at 64GB for $699, and $799 for the Plus. They’ll be available for pre-order Friday, and in stores September 22nd.