Apple’s 10th Anniversary iPhone
The iPhone X became available November 3, and will keep app developers busy. As with previous releases, there are a few complaints about the new device:
- The iPhone X is the first iPhone to employ an OLED display, which brings sharper and more vivid images, but also the risk of burn-in or image persistence.
- The iPhone X’s display to become unresponsive in cold weather (a fix is in the works).
- The price.
All in all, however, consumers are extremely happy with it, and so far, reviews of the device are downright poetic.
“The iPhone X OLED is bright, sharp, vibrant without verging into parody, and generally a constant pleasure to look at”, says Nilay Patel of the Verge.
Developers, get busy
In the meantime, it’s a good time for developers to test their apps in the iPhone X simulator by downloading Xcode 9.0.1. Many apps will need to be rewritten for the iPhone X to take advantage of the extra screen height. Infused into the new phone’s hardware:
- 3D facial recognition
- A groundbreaking neural engine
- Artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities and software which could enable much more sophisticated apps.
Facial Data Access for gaming apps
While Apple was praised by privacy experts for assuring that facial data used to unlock its new iPhone X would be securely stored on the phone itself, thousands of app developers will gain access to facial data in order to build entertainment features for iPhone X customers, such as pinning a three-dimensional mask to their face for a selfie or letting a video game character mirror the player’s real-world facial expressions, according to Reuters.
Apple allows developers to take certain facial data off the phone as long as they agree to seek customer permission and not sell the data to third parties.
This data, which can be removed from the phone and stored on a developer’s own servers, can help monitor how often users blink, smile or even raise an eyebrow.
That remote storage raises questions about how effectively Apple can enforce its privacy rules, according to privacy groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Democracy and Technology. Apple maintains that its enforcement tools – which include pre-publication reviews, audits of apps and the threat of kicking developers off its lucrative App Store – are effective.
The data available to developers cannot unlock a phone, but it is shareable – with the user’s permission – when used to build app features.
The App Store has been redesigned to help customers discover new favorites. Developers are encouraged to update apps and product pages, and to submit to the App Store.
Menlo will be sharing our impressions of the iPhone X next week. Stay tuned.
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