…and we’re back.
It’s another September, and that means another iPhone—but at a $999 starting price, the iPhone X is the most expensive Apple smartphone ever sold. The X is more expensive than the cheapest Mac notebook, yet, despite its hefty price tag, it’s entirely worth the upgrade.
The Future of Smartphone Design
The iPhone X—pronounced “Ten”—is fully coated with glass on its front and back sides. Still, Apple continues to emphasize that it’s the “most durable” hardware ever used in a smartphone, even if the entire front display is screen. The only exception to this design is a small sliver at the top of the camera, and as a result, the X lacks the familiar Apple home button.
The X boasts a new feature called “Animoji,” which uses facial recognition to create short clips of your emotions and then sends them off as customized emojis. Apple’s facial recognition allows you to create more personalized emojis that reflect the exact expressions you’re making.
One of the more impressive features of the X is wireless charging. Apple names this technology “Qi,” but aside from its attractiveness in this week’s press reports, wireless charging is substantially slower than standard wires. The X also has two more hours of battery life compared to the iPhone 7.
Nonetheless, the most riveting news about the X is its unprecedented speed. The rate of its single-core processor is more than double than that of the Samsung Galaxy S8—a Geekbench score of 4,100 vs. 2,000—and the iPhone X’s multi-core processor triumphs over Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro. The iPhone X runs at computer-fast speeds, so much so that TechCrunch has called its processor “overkill.” The numbers don’t lie.
The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will be in stores by the end of this month, but the X won’t be available for pre-order until October 7, with a shipping release date of November 3.
A Familiar Battle
What’s important to note is that the iPhone X will hit the market at the same time as other high-end smartphones. The upcoming Galaxy Note 8, for instance, is programmed with the consistently reliable Android processing system and is actually quite larger than the X.
As for biometrics, the Note 8 has everything: a fingerprint reader, an iris scanner, and face detection capabilities to unlock the device. Critics argue, however, that the face detection feature can be bypassed by holding up a photo to the camera. The X, on the other hand, is built with a 3-D face scanner called Face ID. Touch ID—the now obsolete iOS fingerprint reader—has been gutted out of the system, and buyers will find that there’s no iris scanner in the X.
Both phones are water-resistant, but the X still doesn’t offer a headphone jack. This once-essential feature has been removed since the launch of the iPhone 7, though the Note 8 flaunts one.
The Note can make purchases just about anywhere since Samsung recently acquired LoopPay. Users will be glad to see that they can pay at almost any credit card reader with a couple taps, and although Apple Pay is gaining popularity, it’ll take a while until it becomes as accepted as Samsung Pay.
I believe that the X isn’t another rushed iPhone iteration to make “old” iOS devices obsolete. As a consumer, it’s essential to look past gimmicky features like Animoji, but the bandwidth numbers are staggering: the X is faster and stronger than any smartphone past or present.
The iPhone X is what Apple fans want; it’ll signal the transition into smartphones that expand the possibilities of augmented reality. The future of smartphones is here, and the iPhone X is certainly at the front of it.