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The iPhone X’s Face ID Is A lot More Secure Than You Might Think

Apple’s Brand New Facial Recognition security solution is actually quite powerful and seems to be dupe free

Face-ID-come-fully-loaded-iPhone-X


How Secure is Face ID?

“Apple is Very Confident”

 

Since Apple’s keynote back in August revealing the iPhone X many had scrutinizing comments about the whole Face ID technology the company introduced. This technology is not new but Apple took existing technology, reimagined it, repackaged it, and transformed it into a working, high-security, solution. Apple is so confident in Face ID that they made a bold move to discard Touch ID altogether in their latest flagship smartphone.

Apple made claims that Face ID is actually a lot more secure compared to finger print sensors available today. Of course, no security feature is absolutely fool proof (as Apple or other manufacturers may claim about their own security solutions) because people always find a way around technology if they really want to try. Yet, we can be sure that Face ID will be a tough security feature not easily beat. Face ID works in it’s own unique way thanks to Apple’s face sensing solutions found inside that controversial “notch” at the top of the iPhone X. This “notch” houses it’s newly developed TrueDepth camera which detects a 3D mapping of your face. Not even accurate professional masks modeled after your face can dupe this system. Face ID does not work if your eyes are closed.

iphone-x-event-face-id-truedepth-camera

Face ID had awkward introductions which eventually broke the ice for many, now happy, owners of the iPhone X. Again, this isn’t new tech but it is a revolutionized piece of security software that Apple re-imagined and executed very well. Many reviewers online are calling this a “smashing hit” or “something that does not disappoint.” It is fast, it works, and it really does grow with you (or at least grow with your facial hair). Another reason why this is a success among Apple fans is due to this refreshing feel Face ID contributes to. Apple has been consistently recycling the same old, aging, iPhone 6 model design over and over again. It got old pretty fast or eventually.

The iPhone X breathed new life into the Apple image that already has great prestige in the tech world and people have warmed up to Face ID and basically owned it.

How Do you Enable or Disable Face ID?

Enrolling Face ID is easy as well as disabling it.

  • To Enable open Settings > Face ID & Passcode > Use Face ID, and disable iPhone Unlock.
  • To Disable Face ID, open Settings > Face ID & Passcode, and tap Reset Face ID. 

FaceIDTA-846110596

“A Few Caveats”

Of course, there are still some things people will need to get used to. Mainly users are now forced to lift the iPhone up a bit and face your head towards that advanced set of imaging sensors located in the notch that the iPhone X is being known for. I have witnessed this awkward routine on the bus and while walking down the streets of Vancouver. Honestly, it is not as elegant looking or feeling as a quick Touch ID finger print scanner. With Touch ID you can have the phone Unlocked and ready to go while you pull it out of the pocket (we all know where the classic home button is). We also know that Face ID is the ONLY advanced security feature option available for iPhone X users (other than the classic Apple password lock screen method). In comparison the Samsung Galaxy Note8 comes with a Face Recognition option, Finger Print sensor, Iris Scanner, Voice Unlock, pattern unlock, pin code unlock, and password unlock. Apple, however, is betting it’s money on a “one solution to beat em all” type of design with solid confidence in their Face ID which I do agree beats a lot of the options available on the Note 8. Yet the Note8’s options is versatile enough to help you comfortably unlock your phone one way or another. I personally don’t use any locks on my lock screen and haven’t done so for many years. To each user their own, eh?

We believe the Face ID is going to reshape how smartphone’s are built into the future. The Galaxy S9 (upcoming) from Samsung is expected to steal some of these features from the iPhone X. If so, I wouldn’t be surprised, all tech manufacturers borrow and share ideas left right and center (ignoring all the useless fire’s lit by media sites trying to create dumb wars, I’m looking at you BGR). Money goes around in ways many do not expect it.

In Conclusion: “It’s Quite Secure and Also Pretty Cool”

face-id-3d-scanning-points

 So in terms of answering the question of “how effective is Face ID” and “can we trust it?” basically lies in the fact that all security features aren’t fool proof in smartphones. Despite this, Face ID has proven itself to be very effective in fending off prying eyes 99% of the time. You can sleep easy at night and not have to sweat if you are afraid someone might use your face to unlock while you are asleep because Face ID needs your eyes opened. Combined with Apple’s world class privacy features we know you won’t have issues of losing your personal data. Apple designed Face ID to store your facial data (including all mathematical calculations involved) inside a dedicated processing chip built into the mother board. Your Face information is encrypted via Apple’s “Secure Enclave” feature which is constantly updated to recognize your ever changing facial features. If a close match (due to drastic changes to your face) is detected, using your passcode will further update your encrypted data to further understand and recognize you as the owner.

Face ID is all stored on your iPhone and never uploaded to the iCloud. This make’s it extra secure. The only time the data could be transferred out of your iPhone X is when you authorize Apple Care to analyze all aspects of your device during repair.

Face ID is actually really cool thanks to the array of sensors including: TrueDepth camera, Infrared lighting, Proximity Sensors, Flood illuminator, and the advanced Dot Matrix projector. All this work together to create a seamless and quick unlocking experience (you just have to hold it up a bit to look at it).

The Face ID sensors also have another purpose as well such as attention awareness detection. Things like dimming the display if you turn your face away, or lowering the volume of alerts if you turn your face to look at the display are all found in the iPhone X. Of course it is easy to turn OFF these features, you can open Settings > Face ID & Passcode and disable Attention Aware Features.

The other cool feature that will have some awesome uses is the new animoji’s. The ability to accurately map and track your face enables you to use special ani-emoji filters on top of your face and have them “talk” with precise facial expressions based on your face and what you are saying or what facial expressions you are making. Snapchat is taking advantage of this feature, pretty cool.

Overall, we really like this new feature Apple is betting their big bucks on and we love how advanced this is. It “evolves” with you and utilizes some of the best tech advancements we have today.

Would you use Face ID often? Or would you get tired of it after a while? Do you think Face ID is safe? Let us know in the comments below!

Samsung Galaxy S8 Receives BETA Test Invitation for Android 8.0 & Samsung Experience 9.0

Samsung Galaxy S8 Receives BETA Test Invitation for Android 8.0 & Samsung Experience 9.0 (U.S., UK, South Korea)

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What is it?

Oreo is most people’s favorite desert and what better to experience such a tasty treat then in your favorite smartphone device?

Samsung has officially announced it’s beta program for testing Android 8.0 Oreo for the Galaxy S8 and S8+. The beta test not only introduces Android 8.0 but also will provide a new UX platform called Samsung Experience 9.0. So far it look’s like it will be a very nice jump from what we are seeing in Samsung Experience 8.5 in the Galaxy Note8.

Samsung has stated that the software being previewed and tested will be something we can expect to find in the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S9 flagship phone or also known as the “next flagship Galaxy device”.

In the U.S. the beta program will only be made available to users who are using Sprint, T-mobile or own U.S. unlocked models. In the U.K. you will need an active non-carrier SIM-free model. The Note8 will not be included in the preview beta testing program. Once testing is completed we are certain that the Galaxy Note8 will receive the newly upgraded OS platform.

In the previous year we saw Samsung providing the same beta program for the S7 and S7 Edge but with limited seats for about 1,000 users only. This year Samsung has raised the enrollment cap to 10,000 so you should have a decent chance of getting in.

The program was quite interesting and it did shed a lot of detailed change-logs with every revision Samsung pushed to beta testers. We loved watching the OS transform over time and we hope to see more of this as well this year.

How To Register

The process is quite simple, you only need to download the Samsung+ app (Samsung Members app) from the Google Play Store or just launch it from your apps list. You will need to be signed in with your own Samsung account for this to work. Now we simply wait and see if you will be prompted to register and join, it should show up on the main screen of the app. Users have reported that their download began shortly after enrollment and may require manually refreshing and rechecking depending on where you are.

 

Have you registered yet? Do you want to try? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Pixel 2 XL Screen Burn-In is an Actual Thing, Google is “Actively Investigating” the Issues

Pixel 2 XL Screen Burn-In is an Actual Thing, Google is “Actively Investigating” the Issues

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The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have been under scrutiny for dropping the 3.5mm headphone jack, interesting build quality and design (as per JerryRigsEverything’s analysis) and yet we encounter a new issue which is screen burn in. Since Google took on a new OLED panel for their flagship phone many know about the potential screen burn in effect they can experience. This happens when the screen is kept on and a static image or element stays in the same spot (like the home button on screen). After a while a “ghost-like” imprint of that icon or whatever else was on the screen permanently remains on the display. A lot of people who use IPS LCD displays may be taking jabs at OLED people using the Pixel 2 XL but let’s take a deeper look.

It has only been a week or two since the release of the Pixel 2 XL and we are already seeing these issues. If you view a grey image on your display you will see that the navigation bar is beginning to become imprinted on the display. In the notification shade the clock is quite infamous for “burning in”.

How to Check your screen

Depending on the degree of the burn-in it may be difficult to actually see the effect on your Pixel 2 XL. Here is a quick test:

  • Open this article in a web browser on your phone.
  • Click and open each of these thumbnails and view the images at full screen

With each image opened check around the display at different brightness levels to see if you can make out the navigational keys that would normally be found at the bottom and if the clock is “imprinted” near the top of your display.

Again, depending on your screen brightness and the color of the image shown on the screen we can see varying effects of the “burn-in” effect.

What Can We Do?

The Pixel 2 XL’s we have in our office have seen only about 1 weeks worth of usage with each day seeing about 4 – 5 hours of screen on time. We are not making a world wide claim that all Pixel 2 XL’s will have this issue but given the nature of an OLED panel we are not surprised to see these issues taking hold on some Pixel 2 XL models this early in it’s life. We are starting to see more and more users reporting the same problem.

Google has stated the following:

“The Pixel 2 XL screen has been designed with an advanced POLED technology, including QHD+ resolution, wide color gamut, and high contrast ratio for natural and beautiful colors and renderings. We put all of our products through extensive quality testing before launch and in the manufacturing of every unit. We are actively investigating this report.”

Most likely, if your Pixel 2 XL does suffer from this issue you will be entitled to a warranty repair or replacement from the manufacturer. The 2016 Pixel’s also had a slight problem with this which prompted Google to provide fast replacements to these users.

We will wait for Google to provide more insight into this ordeal and hear them out when they do announce their findings.

 

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The Essential Phone’s Price Reduced to $499

The Esssential Phone’s Price Reduced to $499 & $200 Credit Available for Current Owners

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The Essential Phone has finally been reduced in it’s cost. This high-end Android smartphone began shipping to customers in late August. The original cost of the phone was $699 but some retailers were already starting to discount the devices by $100 soon after. Today, we are happy to see a permanent drop in price by a whopping $200 which makes it a more reasonable $499 smartphone.

Niccolo de Masi, president of Essential, has satted that anyone who purchased the Essential phone before Oct. 22 will receive a “Friends and Family” code for usage on their store. The code reduces the cost of your next Essential phone purchase, this means that any new purchases reduces the Essential Phone’s cost from $499 to a mind boggling $299 price tag. You can also use the code, if you receive one, for purchase of the Essential 360 Camera add-on which was designed for the Essential Phone. This coupon would make the 360 camera add-on practically free. Folks who are eligible must hop on The Essential’s website and submit their information to claim the $200 store code before November 15.

The Essential Phone, in term’s of sales, haven’t seen much success this year so it is pretty clear as to why the company decided to slash it’s costs for their flagship phone. We are talking about less than two months after the first units began shipping. The heavy hype of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 also affected the sales and presence of the Essential Phone.

The Essential Phone, despite it’s sales woes, brings some impressive specifications. This includes: a near-bezel-free 5.71 inch display, 128 GB of internal storage, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor, and a well-designed body built out of titanium frames and a ceramic shell. The software, being stock android, did not bring anything interesting. It also took the company several updates to fix the array of issues that plagued it’s camera function. The company has promised more updates into the future.

Now that we have a new $499 price tag for the Essential Phone would you be interested in buying one instead of the more expensive Galaxy S8 flagships? How do you feel about the software and build of the phone? Let us know in the comments below!

Google Pixel 2 & the Pixel 2 XL: #Courage (No Headphone Jack)

Google Pixel 2 & the Pixel 2 XL: No Headphone Jack

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The Google Pixel and the Pixel XL were big successes in relaunching Google’s signature pure Android line up of high end flagship devices. The Pixel was up there amongst the best in terms of photographic capabilities while boasting big specs and a comparatively large price tag.

The Google Pixel 2 and the Pixel 2 XL launched recently at Google’s own unveiling. The Pixel 2 is the second iteration of it’s focus on building great hardware for the Android ecosystem. This year, the Pixel 2’s camera (which is not a dual camera setup) was given, yet again, the highest DxO score. The device boasts of the latest high end specs and a full metal body with that iconic Google Nexus/Pixel

The biggest gripe, nonetheless, is the lack of the headphone jack which shows that Google is following in Apple’s footsteps. Last year during Apple’s transition away from the 3.5mm headphone jack with their iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, Google poked fun at Apple. Now the Pixel 2 connects to USB C powered headsets or via USB C to 3.5mm adapters. #Courage seems to be the growing trend here and you can take it as a good or bad thing. The 3.5mm headphone jack is slowly on it’s way out but it is too soon for it to be snuffed out due to the fact that the majority of people still prefer using cheap alternative 3.5mm headphones and high end 3.5mm headset’s that pump out audiophile-approved quality sound. It is true, however, that wireless technology will be a big part of our technological future.

The Pixel 2 is also the most boring of the two models presented. The Pixel 2 XL is the better choice in our eyes for the updated design that certainly plays catch up to all other mainstream manufacturers (Samsung, LG, etc). The Pixel 2 stays true to the original Pixel device released last year with thicker bezels on the front and being the smaller choice. It does not have the headphone jack either but it also does not go for the bezel-less design.

We will take a quick look at both the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL side by side and see what is special about them.

Let’s quickly look at the Pixel 2 specs:

  • CPU:
    • Snapdragon 835
  • RAM:
    • 4 GB RAM
  • Display:
    • 5 inch (1080p) AMOLED panel 1920 x 1080 (16:9 Ratio) (~441 ppi density)
  • Storage:
    • 64GB/128GB of storage no microSD
  • I/O:
    • NO 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Camera:
    • 12.2 MP, f/1.8, OIS, PDAF
    • 8 MP, f/2.4, Front Facing Camera
  • Battery:
    • 2,700 mAh pack
  • Comms:
    • Dual-Band WiFi
    • Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP,LE,aptX HD
    • USB Type C
  • Water Resistance:
    • IP67 Dust & Water RESISTANCE for up to 1.5 meters and up to 30 minutes

 

The Google Pixel 2 was made for those who love the original Pixel design

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And that pretty much sums up the basics of the Google Pixel 2. It is the younger brother of the Pixel 2 XL.

The Pixel 2 has it’s own purpose and will serve it in a very different way than what the Pixel 2 XL has. It caters more to those who loved the older design of the original Pixel phone but with a high end spec treatment. It also gives more options for those who really do not want to buy into the whole bezel-eliminating trend and for those who do not want a large display / large bodied phone.

The Pixel 2 will be plenty fast due to the Snapdragon 835 processor and 4 GB of RAM (which is plenty still and for a while). Remember back in the day when 1 GB of RAM were reserved for the truly high end flagship models? We’ve come a long way and the industry is moving quickly. Apps are becoming bigger and more robust and multitasking is a huge signature feature for the Android OS. The 4 GB of RAM will carry users through multitasking especially with Androids new multi window function which opens two apps side by side. Keeping apps in memory to quickly jump around from app to app should not cause any slow downs or issues.

Another difference between the Pixel 2 and the Pixel 2 XL is in the resolution. While the Pixel 2 XL receives the new P-OLED 2880×1440 (18:9 ratio) display the Pixel 2 retains the same 1080p display. At least the Pixel 2 get’s upgraded to an AMOLED panel. The Glass is the standard Corning Gorilla Glass 5.


 

Enter the Pixel 2 XL

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So then let’s move onto the more juicier bits. Enter the Google Pixel 2 XL. The older and more matured brother to the basic Pixel 2 and that which also embodies Google’s entry into serious hardware making actions they are taking as a company to represent pure Android. It is also their first attempt at creating something near bezel-less in terms of the display which follows in the footsteps of LG, Samsung and HTC. The Pixel 2 XL is “the” flagship device that Google has produced in conjunction with HTC.

Specs for the Pixel 2 XL:

  • CPU:
    • Snapdragon 835 Octa-core processor
  • RAM:
    • 4 GB RAM
  • Display:
    • 6 inch P-OLED panel 2880 x 1440 (18:9 Ratio) (~538 ppi density)
  • Storage:
    • 64GB/128GB of storage no microSD
  • I/O:
    • NO 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Camera:
    • 12.2 MP, f/1.8, OIS, PDAF
    • 8 MP, f/2.4, Front Facing Camera
  • Battery:
    • 3,520 mAh pack
  • Comms:
    • Dual-Band WiFi
    • Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP,LE,aptX HD
    • USB Type C
  • Water Resistance:
    • IP67 Dust & Water RESISTANCE for up to 1.5 meters and up to 30 minutes

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The Pixel 2 XL also comes with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 which is the latest in glass tech found on most flagship devices. These are found to be resistant to your car keys and other metal objects in your pockets such as coins. Of course, the glass back display will not be hard enough to resist something as hard and sharp as sand which will cause micro scratches. The display uses the new P-OLED panel with a QHD resolution of 2880 x 1440. The display is also tall with a ratio of 18:9 (like the LG V30) due to the less-bezel’s approach.

The Pixel 2 XL, like the basic model Pixel 2 comes with the newest Snapdragon 835 Octa-Core processor which has been proven to be a beast of a chip. You do not need to worry about slow downs, heat issues, or other performance concerns.

Built out of mostly-aluminum the body is sturdy yet still manages to be pretty light. The curved glass panel on the front of the device also shows a front facing camera at the top. The Panel on the back is also made of glass but only on the top region where the main camera sits. The finger print sensor marks the beginning of the metal back region of the phone. This is a confident design language by Google giving us a composite two piece material back that the Pixel was known for.

The Pixel 2 XL is powered by a 3,520 mAh battery pack that should give you all day performance with ease. Coupled with the Snapdragon 835 you are in for a world of efficient processing. This large battery capacity is large considering that even the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 houses only a 3,300 mAh battery. Even the 3,300 mAh in the Note 8 enables all day usage so the Pixel 2 XL should fare better. Google stated that 15 minutes of charging can give you 7 hours of battery life.

Portrait Mode Available

The primary camera found on the Pixel 2 and 2 XL both come with a new 12.2 MP, f/1.8 sensor and lens. It also utilizes dual-pixel sensors which actually enables Google’s own portrait mode just as Apple, Samsung and many other manufacturers are implementing.

No Dual Camera but that’s quite alright

Google did not go with a dual camera set up this year on either models yet we are impressed to see Googling still adding features like Portrait Mode. Sure Portrait Mode is all about the software but the hardware enabling this via a dual-pixel array is pretty cool to see. The camera that Google offer’s always manages to receive the top DxO mark and this year it is no different. The camera should still give you awesome photos.

New Always On Display

Always on displays have been around for quite some time. However, Google now implemented a new feature on the AOD where the phone will constantly listen for the songs playing in the ambient space in restaurants or other places you may be and show the song title at the bottom of the AOD.

A new “SQUEEZE” feature

This was actually seen in a feature called HTC Edge Sense but since Google did acquire 2,000 engineers and intellectual property from HTC for $1.1 billion we aren’t really surprised it made it to the Pixel 2 and 2 XL. Instead of having to press a button like the S8 you simple squeeze your phone to launch Google Assistant. People seem to have a bit of fun with this feature.

So what do You think?

Despite Google dropping the 3.5mm headphone jack making many fan’s woe and walk away, we still have a good amount of people who will buy the Pixel 2 or Pixel 2 XL. The phone’s are still fantastic in their own right with high end specs, a wonderful camera, and new AOD functions that listen to the music around you without you needing to do anything. The only other thing we did not talk about was price, which is marked at 649 USD for the Pixel 2 and the Pixel 2 XL starts at 849 USD.  The costs for these phone’s aren’t exactly cheap.

Would you buy the Pixel 2 or the Pixel 2 XL?

 

iPhone 8 vs. iPhone 8 Plus vs. iPhone X: This is the Best One

iPhone 8 vs. iPhone 8 Plus vs. iPhone X: Which is the Best One for You?

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Apple has already begun the sales for their brand new iPhone 8 and the 8 Plus but we are going to acknowledge the looming presence of the iPhone X over all iPhone 8 / 8 Plus reviews. What is the iPhone X? Who is the iPhone 8 meant for? What is the best choice for you? If you are in the market for a new upgrade in the iPhone genre let us give you more insight into what the differences are between the three flagship phones. Check out our 5 considerations below to see if it helps you in deciding which iPhone is best for you! Thank you.


 

To begin answering your question we will begin by comparing the Specs below:

iPhone 8

iPhone 8 Plus iPhone X
Display Size: 4.7in Retina HD (1334×750, 326ppi) IPS 5.5in Retina HD (1920×1080, 401ppi) IPS 5.8in Super Retina Display (2436×1125, 458ppi) (Super AMOLED)
OS: iOS 11 iOS 11 iOS 11
Processor:  Apple A11 Bionic, M11 co-processor  Apple A11 Bionic, M11 co-processor  Apple A11 Bionic, M11 co-processor
Storage Size:  64GB/256GB  64GB/256GB  64GB/256GB
Main Camera(s):  12Mp, f/1.8, 5x digital zoom, Quad-LED flash  12 MP wide-angle, f/1.8, OIS + 12 MP telephoto, f/2.8, optical zoom, 10x digital zoom, Portrait Lighting, Portrait Mode, Quad-LED flash  12 MP wide-angle, f/1.8, OIS + 12 MP telephoto, f/2.4, OIS, optical zoom, 10x digital zoom, Portrait Lighting, Portrait Mode, Quad-LED flash
Selfie Camera: 7Mp FaceTime HD, f/2.2, 1080p video 7Mp FaceTime HD, f/2.2, 1080p video 7Mp FaceTime HD, f/2.2, 1080p video
Video Recording: 4K at 24/30/60fps, 1080p slo-mo at 240fps 4K at 24/30/60fps, 1080p slo-mo at 240fps 4K at 24/30/60fps, 1080p slo-mo at 240fps
Dimensions: 67.3×138.4×7.3mm 78.1×158.4×7.5mm 70.9×143.6×7.7mm
Touch ID? YES YES NO
Face ID? NO NO YES
Wireless

Charging?

YES YES YES
Water Proofing? YES IP67 YES IP67 YES IP67
Price USD  $699 $799 $999
3D Touch? YES YES YES
Weight 148g 202g 174g

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Consideration 1: Display / Design

  • iPhone X (iPhone 10):
    • 5.8 inch Super AMOLED (Super Retina Display) (~82.9% screen-to-body ratio) 2436 x 1125 resolution (~458 ppi) True Tone OLED Display w/ ION strengthened glass
  • iPhone 8
    • 4.7 inch True Tone IPS Retina Display (LCD) (~65.4% screen-to-body ratio) 1334 x 750 resolution (~326 ppi) ION strengthened glass
  • iPhone 8 Plus
    • 5.5 inch True Tone IPS Retina HD Display (LCD) (~67.4% screen-to-body ratio) 1920 x 1080 resolution (~401 ppi) ION strengthened glass

 

Let’s begin with the obvious, the display and design. The iPhone X is undoubtedly different. A complete transformation of the iPhone that we used to know. Apple finally got on board with the OLED display with the iPhone X which makes it the first Apple flagship to sport a vibrant display with deep blacks and beautiful colors that OLED panels are known for. Here the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus differs by carrying the regular Apple IPS LCD panels. Now don’t get us wrong, the IPS panels are calibrated meticulously by Apple to still produce “true tone” colors and the iPhone have always been regarded as having some of the best displays for a very long time. Here we must consider if an AMOLED display is important to you.

The next is the shape / design of the iPhone’s. The iPhone X is also extremely different here with it’s brand new Super Retina Display (aka. OLED) that stretches edge to edge but also from the top to the bottom. The unusually bit about the iPhone 10 (X) is that there is a added “lip” at the top which contains the new and fancy optical gadgets needed for it’s advanced Face ID feature (alongside the selfie camera). Many people have agreed that the iPhone 10 (X) looks like it has a pair of “ears” while other’s calls it a “lip” that sticks in from the top cutting into the display. Sure, for some it may not be as elegant of a solution when compared to other edge-to-edge display smartphones out there but there is a reason why Apple chose to go with this design. Apple designed it so that swiping down from either the left or right will bring down either the command center or the notification panel which is not new but could be pretty neat. The only issue that we have seen and was discussed online was the fact that videos and web pages would render strangely on the iPhone 10 (X). Instead of creating a pseudo blackpanel to make the display rectangular as it normally should the webpage or video will flow in and fill those extra screen space. It will take software tweaking via Apple, and app developers to create a new solution for this in the future.

Is this design choice going to throw you off? Would you rather consider the iPhone 8 Plus or the iPhone 8 with it’s more traditional rectangular display?

The iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus still provides us with a fantastic viewing experience that we all know and love. The iPhone 8 comes with the traditional 4.7 inch display while the iPhone 8 Plus comes with a 5.7 inch display. The iPhone 10 (X) comes with the unusual display design but is rated at having a 5.8 inch display. So if you still want a great display

All three iPhone’s now come with a glass back as well as with the glass front. There is a cleanly hidden plastic gasket at the edge of the glass panels which help absorb impact from falls (great design by Apple) and the metal aluminum 7000 series is found to wrap around the iPhone’s. Even the buttons and the mute switch is full aluminum. The metal mesh that covers the ear piece and the microphone is installed with precision to prevent them from popping out. The build quality is fantastic on all three iPhone’s so materials, build quality, design languages should be of little concern to any potential buyer. Apple did a great job here.


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Consideration 2: Design and Performance

Quick Specs Comparison:

  • iPhone X: 
    • Processor: A11 Bionic 6 core processor (2x Monsoon + 4x Mistral)+Tri Core Apple GPU
    • Dimensions: 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm / 174 g
    • No Home Button at all
  • iPhone 8:
    • Processor: A11 Bionic 6 core processor (2x Monsoon + 4x Mistral)+Tri Core Apple GPU
    • Dimensions: 138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3 mm / 148 g
    • Home Button Available (Haptic Feedback)
  • iPhone 8 Plus:
    • Processor: A11 Bionic 6 core processor (2x Monsoon + 4x Mistral)+Tri Core Apple GPU
    • Dimensions: 158.4 x 78.1 x 7.5 mm / 202 g
    • Home Button Available (Haptic Feedback)

The next big thing to consider are the specifications of the iPhone’s. Here, the iPhone 10(X) begins to diverge a little bit away from the iPhone 8 siblings. Internally, however, we have the same powerful Apple A11 Bionic processor with the M11 (Motion) co-processor integrated across all three iPhone’s (refer to chart above). They all differ in size as well as shown above. The iPhone X has a new Super AMOLED display panel which is flexible and wraps to the edges of the smartphone nearly eliminating the bezels. As a result we have the iPhone X clock in between the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus with a weight of 174g and a body dimension of 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm. The iPhone 8 Plus is a bit bigger than the iPhone X with a slightly smaller display size. The iPhone 8, being the base and the youngest sibling, has the smallest display but with the smallest and lightest build.

Since all of the iPhone’s hold an A11 Bionic Processor we know that the performance will be nearly identical (differences can be caused by the display sizes).  Performance should be of little concern except perhaps that the iPhone 8 may squeeze out a higher performance score due to it’s smaller display. A smaller display requires less processing power from the cpu and gpu. All three iPhone’s will apparently feature 3 GB’s of RAM. However, due to Apple’s strict control over their app store and the iOS operating system and the homogenized nature of the iPhone we have little to worry when it comes to RAM performance and speed. Heck, even the first iPhone can be quite smooth and buttery for the most basic tasks and apps even today.

Here, we can easily see what the size and shape differences are from iPhone to iPhone and we hope this will help you make a more informed decision on your purchase. Do you want a light and small iPhone? The iPhone 8 is perfect for you. Do you want a larger iPhone that isn’t too expensive? The iPhone 8 Plus is right up your alley. Don’t care about the costs and want the latest and greatest? Re-introducing the iPhone X.

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Consideration 3: Face ID vs Touch ID

  • iPhone X: Face ID / No Touch ID
  • iPhone 8: Touch ID / No Face ID
  • iPhone 8 Plus: Touch ID / No Face ID

This is huge. So huge, in fact, that we had to create a whole new category to talk about this. So Apple’s vision of a futuristic phone’s will come without a 3.5mm headphone jack and also without a fingerprint sensor. Interesting. Instead the company has introduced a brand new feature called “Face ID”. Yes, you’ve seen and heard it over and over, it is a pretty advanced facial recognition system right on the iPhone. Of course, the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus will NOT come with Face ID but rather they will retain the tried and true Touch ID (finger print bio metrics security). This can make it or break it for a lot of people. Face recognition systems aren’t new, it has been around for several years and it is even available on the Samsung Galaxy Note 8. However, what differs here is that Apple completely revamped it to make it really secure and really accurate. Apple does what it does best, to re-introduce and re-imagine existing tech to make it actually useful and appealing.

We all know about the big Apple mess up during their live keynote when demonstrating the Face ID function for the first time. It didn’t work. Craig Federighi (the speaker) later on tried it three times in quick succession to show that it works flawlessly. This stirred an array of concerns from people world wide but Apple did provide an explanation as to why the iPhone X’s first ever Face ID demonstration “failed”.

With that obvious gripe aside Face ID is honestly a pretty cool tech. This requires new sensors to be packed into the iPhone X’s top “lip” that sticks into the display from the top. Which includes: a flood illuminator, infrared camera, front camera and a dot projector. All of these components work together to create a supposedly seemless facial recognition system. Apple went so far as to make sure that an accurate replica of your face (via  a mask) can’t fool the system let alone a printed photo. The sensors account for “Depth” of your face which essentially scans your face in 3D. Apple did also claim that the iPhone X’s face ID will “grow” with you meaning that even if you grew a beard, made cosmetic changes to your look, or put on a thick winter scarf covering your face the Face ID system will still work. On paper and in terms of marketing that is very cool but we have yet to see how this will work when the iPhone X is in the hands of the millions world-wide. Unfortunately, it seems that the iPhone X did not have any space to include a fingerprint sensor which works without you have to lift your phone up to your face.

Now, we understand that there will be some enthusiasts who will have no problems with this feature. While others, honestly, may revert to the old school pin lock because the “honeymoon” phase with this new feature got either too complicated or annoying. While still others would most likely opt for a Touch ID enabled iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus.

The iPhone X may be Apple’s experimental step forward to test the waters. Shedding the 3.5mm headphone jack, the fingerprint sensor and the home button as well this is a very different iPhone altogether. A whole different beast. The specs are powerful, the technology cutting edge and re-imagined.


Consideration 4: Camera, Lights, Action

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  • iPhone 8
    • 12 MP f/1.8 quad-LED (focal length: 28mm) PDAF, OIS, quad-LED flash
  • iPhone 8 Plus
    • Dual 12 MP: Wide Angle, OIS, f/1.8  +  Telephoto f/2.8, quad-LED flash
  • iPhone X
    • Dual 12 MP: Wide Angle, OIS, f/1.8  +  Telephoto f/2.4, quad-LED flash

All three iPhone’s will come shipped with the latest iOS 11 update which is filled with the newest tweaks and features. This also includes Apple’s camera feature: the revamped “Portrait mode” on the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X thanks to the dual camera module. The iPhone 8 will need to sit out on this one. There is also another feature that is new which Apple calls it “Portrait Lighting”. This new function uses software algorithms to “shine light” from any direction onto your subjects face. This is like having a virtual set of studio lights around you (the photographer) to illuminate your subject. Since this is software based we can see that sometimes the results are a bit wonky depending on the lighting (real lighting at the time of shooting) and the contrast of colors between your subject, the ambient light, and the background. We found that the feature is not that great under tungsten lighting or other poorly lit rooms / places. Nonetheless it is a cool and interesting new feature presented by Apple. We can only look forward to tweaks, improvements and further overhauls of these two Portrait features.

The iPhone 8 will be the only flagship iPhone that will come with a single 12 MP sensor camera. It still has that great f/1.8 wide open aperture which lets in a lot of light and the camera lens is flanked by a quad-LED dual tone flash unit built in. The other two older brothers being the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X both come with a 12 MP dual camera setup yet there are still big differences between the two. The iPhone X will have a upper hand as it comes with a Dual 12 MP camera (one with a wide f/1.8 aperture and the telephoto lens having a respective f/2.4 lens). The iPhone 8 Plus also has a 12 MP dual camera system going on (the primary also being f/1.8 but the telephoto lens being f/2.8 instead which is narrower than the iPhone X’s telephoto lens). 0.4 is not a huge number to fret over but it is a little bit more light that the iPhone X can receive which translates to slightly less noise in your photos. If the fastest telephoto lens on a smartphone is important to you the iPhone X is the go to smartphone. Otherwise, the iPhone 8 Plus (and the iPhone 8) are both more than competent iPhone’s that will still take those famously fantastic photos in most lighting.

Both the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X’s dual camera will be paired with the quad LED dual tone flash units. Also, both telephoto len’s in the dual camera setup come with a 2x OPTICAL zoom feature with up to 10x digital zoom available at your disposal. Only the iPhone X will come with dual OIS (optical image stabilization) in both lenses which enables sharper photos in low light and also reduces camera shake handheld. The iPhone 8 Plus only has OIS in the wide angle lens.

The Selfie Camera is basically the same on all iPhone models with a 7 MP camera with an f/2.2 aperture lens. It will take great selfies as we all know iPhone’s are capable of.

Video Capability

All three iPhone’s have the same videography functionality available via their primary camera:

4K video: [email protected]/30/60fps

[email protected]/60/120/240fps (Slow Mo)

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Consideration 5: The iPhone X is Late

  • iPhone 8 and 8 Plus Available Now
  • iPhone X: Pre-Order starts on October 27 and starts shipping on November 22

The iPhone X will be late, very late, to the party. While the iPhone 8 and the 8 Plus (which are great flagship iPhone options) are now available for your purchase and to be enjoyed almost immediately we still need to wait a month to only pre order followed by another month to actually get them shipped to us. Yes, there will be die hard fans who can wait out an eternity to get their hands on the latest and greatest from Apple while others will simply have great timing with their situation to pick up an iPhone X. The rest of us will need to be patient.

This brings up an important question: “Is the iPhone X worth waiting for?” The fears of it becoming a sort of a glorified let down in the hands of the millions of expected adopters is not an impossibility. There are chances that the Face ID feature which will stand as the phones main unlocking, payment, and other security method (other than the old pin code lock) may run into unexpected issues. If that fails and suddenly becomes unreliable or too annoying to use then what was the wait for? The iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus has the same processors, has a familiar design, Touch ID, and a fantastic camera. Purchasing the 8 or the 8 Plus will still yield you the latest tech from Apple.


Conclusion

So, despite the fact that the iPhone 8 Plus is not too much different from the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 being smaller yet is still a very capable device what would you choose? The iPhone 8 is created and marketed to the people who really need a smaller phone that still packs power and an amazing camera. The 8 is also the cheapest of the three and the price increases as we move up the tier to the 8 Plus and the iPhone X. The only advantages the iPhone X has over the the 8 models is: the display (5.8 inch edge to edge), OLED display panel, brighter telephoto, Face ID (for some), advanced Face ID sensors at the front and top, and being lighter than the iPhone 8 Plus. The rest, largely remains the same with all three boasting Apple’s latest and greatest processors, iOS 11, primary camera’s, True Tone displays (where colors are rendered more true to life), and wireless charging thanks to the glass backs. Speaking of which, all three iPhone’s also feature a stronger glass build that Apple claims should be stronger due to some sapphire mixed in. Portrait lighting and Portrait mode can be more or less a bonus for some photo enthusiast.

 

Samsung Finally Allows Users to Disable the Bixby Button

Samsung Finally Allows Users to Disable the Bixby Button

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Samsung initially really wanted to force users to use Bixby their new AI platform which has been mapped to that Bixby button on the left side of the S8/S8 Plus/Note 8 below the volume keys. Many third-party apps attempted to work around this but Samsung also tried to stop this from happening. However, it seems that Samsung is finally lowering their guard and is enabling users to disable the Bixby button via a new option in your settings.

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The update is still being rolled out to all handsets and is distributed in stages. It may be some time before you can gain access to this option. Many users have lodged complaints against Samsung stating that they keep accidentally hitting the Bixby button when in fact they were trying to hit the Volume Keys instead. Also accidentally launching Bixby while pulling the phone out of your pocket is a common issue. Bixby is not going anywhere, however, because the company is pouring resources into this AI assistant. This new option should be a welcome change in allowing users to disable that hardware Bixby button.

Bixby is still quite too young to be the most useful assistant available today as it still has too many holes in it’s capabilities. It certainly will mature into the future and there are still a lot of features that we hope to see very soon.

The Apple iPhone X is Worth the Upgrade

The Apple iPhone X is Worth the Upgrade

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Apple just uncovered the wraps on the brand new Apple iPhone X, the most talked about smartphone immediately during and after the Apple Keynote today. This is a beautifully crafted iPhone with beefy specs, amazing technology and a hefty price tag. Let’s quickly dive into what Apple is giving us for the holidays. Is the Apple iPhone X worth the upgrade for users who already own the iPhone 7 Plus? Is it worth switching over from Samsung’s S8 and Note 8? Let’s find out.


 

Quick Tech Specs:

  • Dimensions:
    • 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm (5.65 x 2.79 x 0.30 in)
    • Weight: 174 g (6.14 oz)
  • Body Design:
    • SIM: Nano-SIM
    • IP67 Water and Dust Resistant
    • Apple Pay enabled
    • Strong Glass on front and back with Stainless Steel wrapping around the sides
  • Display:
    • Super AMOLED (Super Retina Display) touch screen
    • 5.8 inches (~458 ppi pixels per inch) 2436 x 1125 resolution
    • Edge-to-Edge Display Panel
    • 3D Touch Display
    • Dolby Vision / HDR 10 compliant
    • True-Tone Display
    • Display Zoom
  • System Specs: 
    • OS: iOS 11
    • Apple-Designed A11 Bionic Processor (64 Bit Architecture)
      • 6 – Core processor (2 high performance + 4 high efficiency cores)
      • Embedded M11 Motion Co-processor
    • microSD: NO
    • 3.5mm headphone jack: NO
    • Internal Memory: 64GB / 256 GB
    • RAM: 3 GB
  • Camera Specs:
    • Primary:
      • Dual 12 MP , f/1.8 & f/2.4 phase detect autufocus lens.
        • OIS in both lens’
        • 2x optical zoom on telephoto f/2.4 lens
        • Quad-LED True-Tone Flash
          • Video:
            • Able to record 1080p @ 240 fps for ultra slow motion
            • 4K video recording @ 24/30/60 fps
    • Selfie:
      • 7 MP f/2.2 with Face Detection
        • Portrait Mode / Portrait Lighting Mode
          • Video:
            • 1080p @ 30 fps
  • Wireless Communication:
    • Bluetooth: 5.0, A2DP, LE
    • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, hotspot
    • USB 3.0 (Lightning) Reversible Connector
  • New Features and other Features:
    • New: Face ID
    • New: Animoji
    • New: Augmented Reality Implementation
  • Battery:
    • Unspecified: Claimed to have 2 hours More than the iPhone 7
    • 30 minutes of charging provides 50% battery life (Fast Charging)

 

What is the iPhone X?

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The iPhone X is Apple’s celebration for their 10th anniversary by providing the best components and the best product they can at this point in time. The iPhone X or the iPhone 10 was unveiled at the Steve Jobs Theatre alongside the more traditional iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus. The iPhone X matches up with most of the leaks and rumors we have already seen with that edge-to-edge bezel-less display that resembles a cross breed of the LG G6 and the Essential Phone. What is most exciting, however, is not in the design of the phone but the hardware and software that Apple presented. It comes with AR (Augmented Reality) capabilities backed by powerful hardware and professional software engineers who put it all together into a cohesive package that, so far, does not feel like a gimmick. The iPhone X also comes with a chock full of senors at the top of the display within that tiny strip of black bezel which can measure the depth of your face and shoot 30,000 invisible dots to create a security image based on your face. This is so advanced and I have not seen such a thing launch with a smartphone yet. Samsung’s face recognition is full of holes and can be bypassed with a printed picture of the owner of the iPhone. The new Apple-Designed processor is the A11 Bionic which is a 6 core processor with 2 high performance and 4 high efficiency cores. There is also an M11 Motion coprocessor and a Neural Engine that processes the new Face ID feature. There is so much more to cover about the iPhone X so read on below and we will try to explain what we witnessed in each category of the phone.

So far, the iPhone X is shaping up to be Apple’s best offering as many people are already raving about the innovations of Apple and this new refreshing design choice that brings the already well received breath taking AMOLED display panel that goes edge-to-edge.

Lets Break it down…

iPhone X: The Display

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Apple calls it the Super Retina Display which is basically the leaked Edge-to-Edge near bezel-less Retina Display now built on an OLED display panel for the first time for an iPhone. OLED panel’s have been around for a long time and Samsung and LG are the primary manufacturer’s of said display technologies. It provides deeper colors, deeper blacks, high brightness levels and more. We are happy to see that the iPhone X boasts a 5.8 inch Super Retina Display with a (~458 ppi pixels per inch) 2436 x 1125 resolution, The display panel curves around the edge’s of the display. There is only a tiny piece of bezel that sticks in from the top and center which contains an impressive array of sensors and cameras.

The display is quite beautiful to look at. Period. We are already deep in an age of high end smartphones that provide amazing display experiences so though we are not utterly blown away we still greatly appreciate Apple joining the bezel-less wars. The 5.8 inch display is awesome to look at and to have more display real estate is always welcome. With true blacks, and awesome colors popping Apple also engineered the device to provide accurate color gamuts.

iPhone X: The Specs, Battery Life and the removal of the Home Button

As mentioned the new iPhone X is powered by Apple’s newly developed A11 Bionic processors which is a six core 64 bit processor with an M11 motion co-processor and a Neural Engine. The A11 Bionic CPU is 25 percent faster than last year’s A10 chip and it the four core high efficiency component is 70 percent faster than the older model. The new Apple-Designed GPU is 30 percent more efficient than last year making it on par with the A10 at half the power.

The flagship is rated at IP67 which is water and dust resistant. The iPhone weighs about 174 grams which is quite light compared to the Galaxy note 8 and the phone itself is not that big in the hands with a spacious 5.8inch AMOLED (Super Retina) display.

The Processor is not slow at all but rather the opposite. IT is fast, powerful and speedy. Gaming will never be an issue as the new GPU also supports Metal 2 API and console quality gaming. Heavy duty apps won’t be an issue either as the processing power can handle up to 600 billion operations per second. Apple hasn’t been clear on a few front’s though; we have still yet to figure out what the battery capacity is. Apple simply dismissed any comments about battery specs with a simple statement that the iPhone X will last 2 hours longer than the iPhone 7. So far we have heard that the iPhone X should have 3GB of RAM but this is not officially confirmed yet.

The iPhone X is running on iOS 11 at launch so it will come with all of the awesome perks the operating system brings.

71f76490c7da1e03f06ca371a41154d8Face ID works very well.

The Home button is now gone, instead it is replaced by a tiny on screen tab at the bottom of the phone which you must swipe up to go home, tap and swipe to the center to go to your multitasking cards and also swipe left and right on that little tab to switch between apps. This seems a bit strange to us and though the process is smooth enough it will be a bit of a transition for people who are used to the famous iPhone button. If that traditional button placement is still preferred we recommend you check out the iPhone 8 or the iPhone 8 Plus instead. To unlock your phone with Face ID will require you to pick up your phone, look directly at it to see that white lock icon switch to the Unlocked position, then you must slide up to get rid of the lock screen. It sort of feels like the android lock screen with all that swiping and sliding.

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To get to your Commands just swipe down from the top right corner of the phone and to get to your notifications you will need to swipe down from the left side of the iPhone.

The iPhone X has been certified with an IP67 water/dust resistant rating. This is perfect for the time where you accidentally spill water and you have no need to worry about dust.

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iPhone X: The Camera & Augmented Reality:

Main Camera:

The iPhone X comes with a Dual Camera configuration both of the lens’ will be 12 MP in sensor size. True to the leaks, rumors and the dummy units the iPhone X’s dual camera layout is vertical (up and down) compared to the horizontal placement we see on the iPhone 7 Plus and the iPhone 8 Plus. Between the two len’s sits the Quad-LED True Tone Flash which illuminates subjects 50% farther and brighter. The Dual 12 MP sensors have larger pixels that are deeper and have new color filters. The iPhone X will be the second flagship phone to have Dual-OIS (optical image stabilization) in both lens’ (the first being the Galaxy Note 8). Optical Image Stabilization will provide clearer and sharper images even in low light situations. Especially during video recording OIS will come in handy as it stabilizes your video shots a great deal compared to devices that do not have OIS.

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A new feature that was announced was Portrait Lighting. This feature uses the advanced cameras, the new A11 Bionic processor with it’s new ISP, Depth Sensing Cameras and complicated software to create artificial lighting on your subject’s face as if there were studio lights in place all around you. We have yet to test this and see how well this works. Just like the portrait mode that came with the iPhone 7 Plus this could be a hit or a miss. The different Portrait Lighting modes include: Natural Light, Studio Light, Contour Light, Stage Light, and Stage Light MONO (black and white).

The 2X optical zoom is found on the telephoto lens with that f/2.4 aperture opening. Sure, the f/2.4 is narrower and lets in less light compared to the f/1.8 faster lens on the wide angle lens but generally portraiture is best used in good lighting. When you tap and hold the 2x ZOOM button in the camera app you have the option to slide it around on a small circle to quickly zoom up to 10x zoom. 6x zoom is highest for video zooms.

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Apple says that because the A11 Bionic chip has advanced machine learning this would help a great deal in taking better photo’s. It seems that the photography system will be able to see more, comprehend the scenes more and execute methods. There are 6 elements (lens’) in the f/1.8 wide angle camera. The company also managed to include OIS in the telephoto len’s via what they call a “state-of-the-art seven-magnet solution”.

Apple also stated that the Portrait Mode is improved so that you can achieve even sharper images and the background blur should be improved even in low light usage.

The iPhone X now supports 4K video up to 60 fps and slo-mo videos up to 1080p up to 240 fps.

Augmented Reality

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AR, Augmented Reality was a big feature presented during Apple’s keynote. The primary dual camera’s on the iPhone X is more than capable. Apple paired up with some well known game development companies to demo a game based entirely on AR. The game was smooth, immersive, and sound and visuals respond to your camera. During the Apple Keynote they showed some pretty cool AR usages. For example, when watch a game at the basketball match or baseball you can use various apps to point your iPhone at the players on the court. The app will use your iPhone’s AR capabilities to pin a name and face and stats on each living player before you.

Another cool AR implementation is using the star apps. Point your iPhone towards the sky above you and the app will apply the starry map with its lines, dots, and names upon the literal sky. No software gimmicks. It uses the advanced AR enabled software and the advanced iPhone camera inside.

The Cool side of the new Selfie Camera: Face ID and the TrueDepth Camera

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The 7 MP True Depth Camera has an aperture of f/2.2. Impressively, Apple integrated Portrait mode and Portrait Lighting mode into this camera. We expect to see some pretty awesome portrait selfies to start popping up online.  The Selfie camera also works with the new security feature Apple calls “Face ID”. Face ID is basically an advanced form of the face recognition unlocks found on other devices. The greatest difference between the two is that Apple’s implementation provides a fast, and an actual secure solution to use your face to unlock your iPhone and also use Apple Pay.

The set up is quick and involves you looking at the screen and rotating your head in a circular motion. This is achieved by the TrueDepth camera, the infrared sensor, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, flood illuminator, dot projector and the A11 Bionic chip with the Neural Engine inside. So your information need not sync with some cloud system far away but directly with the engine integrated inside your iPhone X. The TrueDepth camera projects 30,o00 invisible dots that creates a precise 3D depth map of your face. During the keynote Apple has explained that you no longer can use a simple photo of your face nor can you sculpt a perfect replica of your face and use that to unlock. It needs YOUR face. Additionally, even if you were to grow a beard, your hair, wear a scarf or change your earrings thanks to the adaptive Face ID feature the function changes with you and still recognizes you.

The TrueDepth camera is also able to analyze more than 50 different muscle movements that is then mimic’d by your chosen emoji. It worked fantastically and was super fun to play with. You can send this over Apple iMessages as a sticker or an animated emoji with your voice recording. It is accurate, fun and worked darn well.

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iPhone X Joins the Wireless Charging Front:

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The build of the iPhone comprises of glass and surgical-grade stainless steel. Thanks to the glass back Apple is able to finally incorporate wireless charging. During the keynote various reps introduced their partnerships with various companies who will be providing Qi Certified wireless charging products and service in and around stores, cafes, libraries, and charging pads. They already announced an elegant looking Apple AirPower which is a take on previously presented charging power mats but somehow through this mat the iPhone will be able to show the battery percentages of all of your other Apple products such as the new Apple Watch Series 3, and the optional AirPod Wireless Charging Case.

Conclusion & Thoughts:

The phone comes in either a 64 GB configuration for 999$ or a 256 GB variant which is priced higher. On the Canadian website the pricing is set at $1319.00 and $1529.00 respectively.  So the price is going to be heavy and most may be deterred from this awesome iPhone due to that point alone. Considering that the smartphone market prices are on the rise we should not be entirely surprised with the pricing. If you do end up pouring in your savings into this device outright or on contract remember that you are investing in a fantastic new smartphone with high end specs, new features that look really cool (though we are unsure how the customers will respond into the future). If the price is too high and if you miss the home button we still recommend other high end smartphones such as the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S8, S8 Plus, the LG V30 and others.

The pricing seems to be competing with that of the Galaxy Note 8 which is similarly priced at a high premium.

The iPhone X is undoubtedly a big contender in the flagship premium smartphone arena. It needs to face off with the likes of the LG V30, the Note 8, the S8 Plus, and a few others. Apple, however, seems to have the upper hand in marketing as their commercials and adverts appeal to most people. The Apple brand is also a premium icon statement that have heads turning without much effort. We would not be surprised to see many still go for the iPhone X one way or another as it is indeed the most beautiful and refreshing design change that Apple has brought in a long time. One of the major pitfalls of releasing a new smartphone every year is the challenge of designing a revolutionary device. The iPhone X’s design did not seem unique in itself as it resembled a cross breed of the S8, the Essential phone and the LG V30. I do not believe that design alone is the main reason to buy the iPhone X. The reason is in the Apple brand, the new and awesome features that Apple laid out on us which includes the newly announced; AR, amazing TrueDepth camera with it’s array of advanced senors, and the new FaceID. The Animoji is also a cute and fun addition that breathed life into Apple’s new product.

During the Apple Keynote Tim Cook and his associates did not make any mentions about the 3.5mm head phone jack at all. In Apple’s eyes, it is truly a thing of the past. However, we still see many people and users desire for a flagship premium phone to have all functions available including the 3.5mm headphone jack. How long will the 3.5mm jack last?

Overall the iPhone X is a serious flagship phone with serious specs and exciting new features some of which unseen yet in another smartphone.  Just be prepared to shell out an arm and a leg for it’s premium price.

Preorders for the iPhone X begins on October 27 while the smartphones will begin shipment on November 3.

 

 

 

 

iPhone 8 and iPhone X Rumor and Info Round Up! Launching on September 12!

iPhone 8 and iPhone X Rumor and Info Round Up!

Apple is expected to bring the latest and the greatest in 2017 to compete with the Samsung Galaxy S8+, Note 8, LG V30 and more. We rounded up all the available information that is floating around on the web in this article for your enjoyment.

Update: The next generation iPhone’s are expected to be announced on September 12!

Summary:

It is speculated that Apple is bringing a specialized “iPhone X” alongside the expected iPhone 8. The iPhone X is expected to have a glass body with edge-to-edge OLED displays. The home button will be removed (perhaps in favor of an under the display home button as we have seen in the Galaxy phones). The Touch ID feature is also rumored to being scrapped in favor of Apples brand new face recognition system. The iPhone 8 is expected to have a 4.7 inch display while the iPhone 8 Plus will have a 5.5 inch display.

Expected Specs:

  • 5.8″ OLED display panel
  • 10nm Next-Generation Apple A11 Fusion Core Processors
  • Glass / Metal body
  • Edge-to-Edge Displays
  • Brand New Face Recognition system (expected to replace Touch ID)
  • No more Home Button
  • Wireless Charging
  • Total of Three models expeccted: iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X
  • Stronger Water / Dust – Resistance Certification (IP68)

Apple iPhone X – September 12 Launch Date

2017 is Apple’s 10th anniversary of the successful iPhone series. We already know that the iPhone 8 is on it’s way but many have great hopes that the iPhone X will be an anniversary edition that Apple will announce. There has already been a great deal of rumors and leaks about these mysterious devices. A leak inside the iOS 11 golden master edition suggested that there is indeed an iPhone X. The iPhone 8 series will be kept as a traditional release to succeed the iPhone 7.

There were about 10 prototypes that Apple tested. We have already seen leaks from Apple themselves in regards to a new Face Detection system alongside a massive design change. It may seem that the iPhone X will be the device that takes the edge-to-edge display and removes the home button entirely. The Rumored 5.8 inch display panel is said to contain only 5.15 inches of useable space while the other bits of the display will be reserved for virtual spaces to replace the home button.

We know that the iPhone 8 is expected to come with a flexible OLED panel which will be an upgrade from the traditional LCD that Apple has used all these years. This should enable Apple to create a thinner profile iPhone that consumes less power and provides contrast ratio and saturation levels that many have come to love. There will be a slight 2.5D curved display rather than the flat displays we have come to tire of.

Moving away from the aluminum body build Apple is moving into the glass body market as we have seen in the iPhone 4. There will be a polished stainless steel frame that wraps the glass on the front and back.

The iPhone X is expected to come with water resistance improved to an IP68 rating to compete in the market space. This improves protection against rain, splashes, and drop’s into a bit of water.

The A11 processor chip inside the iPhone 8 / iPhone X will be built on a 10-nano meter process which will increase it’s power and efficiency. Finally, we hope to see that Apple will join the wireless market of inductive wireless charging. Apple has been working on a robust facial recognition system for a while now and industry analysts have been consistently quoting that Apple will indeed replace Touch ID in favor of a fancy face recognition program. We have yet to see how that plays out.

The iPhone X will have a 5 inch premium OLED panel alongside the standardized 4.7 and 5.5 inch iPhone 8’s.

The Cost of the next generation iPhone’s is also a huge point of talk amongst people. The estimated cost to buy one is around $1,000. This is the most anyone would ever spend on a consumer smartphone and even tops that of the recently released Galaxy Note 8 at $930. However, we are not entirely surprised at this news because the market prices for smartphones are on the rise.

3D Camera

The Front facing camera will come with an advanced 3D sensing capability. This technology was developed by PrimeSense and allows for the detection of depth information around objects the camera is focused on. This enables 3D facial recognition abilities which trumps regular facial recognition functions already seen in todays flagship phones.

The vertically placed dual camera will provide upgraded AR experiences and photographing abilities.

Design Leaks

We have already seen many leaks via pictures of cases designed for the iPhone 8 and schematics that shows an outline as to what the iPhone 8 will look like. What is pretty much confirmed is the edge-to-edge bezel-less design.

In the recent past developers found some interesting details in the code that was included in an upcoming HomePod speaker. The codes revealed the outline of the iPhone X showing a full-front display, minimal bezel’s, and no home button. There is a spot at the top that houses the earpiece and sensors.

Much of the details come from accessory makers, Apple themselves, supply chain leaks and early build leaks.

 

LG V30 Officially Revealed! Check out the Tech Specs and Details!

LG V30 Officially Revealed At IFA 2017

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LG has finally announced the LG V30 at the IFA 2017 event today in Berlin. The LG V30 is a beautifully crafted premium smartphone that eliminates all unnecessary ideas and features and brings out the best of the best. LG has not only included an upgraded display but wireless charging, and video recording features that have never been seen in other ordinary smartphones.

We talked about the secondary display found above the main display on the LG V20 last year. This year the LG V30 sheds this feature off and provides a seemless FullVision display that is just gorgeous, simple, modern and great to look at. The Secondary Display feature has been replaced with a virtual tab that can be moved around on screen and acts as a quick tab for shortcuts whenever you need them. On top of advanced internal specs and features the LG V30 does come with a water resistant body as well which does bring the LG V30 up to speed to compete with the Apple iPhone 8, Galaxy S8+ and the already announced Galaxy Note 8.

The V20 was known to have a quad DAC integrated into its circuitry which amps up the sound and brings out high quality audio when listening to music, watching movies and the such. The V20 was also known for capturing detailed audio through it’s mic making it a media content creator or musicians dream smartphone. The V30 improves on all of the best features LG provided.

Based on its video recording, audio recording and audio output prowess the V30 is indeed geared towards the artist or media creator. Moving away from that the V30 still impresses to be a premium and powerful flagship device. A lot of the tools, however, are quite advanced and rich so it will take some time for users to figure out how they work.

When will it be released?

The LG V30 is announced to be available in South Korea first on Sept. 21 while the rest of the world will follow suit but a date has not been officially provided just yet for that.

What is the Cost?

The cost of the LG V30 is expected to be similar to the V20 or the G6. Expect to see a price tag around 600$ or 800-900 CAD.

The LG V30 is meant for Creative People

If either videography or recording sound is your thing you will definitely enjoy the LG V30. This one stop media shop comes with a dual camera (one ultra wide angle, and one standard angle). The standard angle lens is a 16 MP camera that has a 71 degree range of view while the 13 MP camera is the ultra wide angle lens that has a 120 degree angle of view.

Last year the V20 had a plastic panel that covered the dual camera module, but this time the V30 comes with crystal glass that ensures that images will be clear and accurate colors will be represented. The only downside is that only the 16 MP standard camera will come with OIS (Optical Image Stabilization). However, since the ultra wide angle lens is the opposite end of the typical telephoto lens this means this isn’t too much of a con. Ultra wide angles generally do not require OIS as much as telephoto lens’ do. Images should still come out crisp and sharp with a lot in focus.

The Standard 16 MP camera will receive a wide aperture of f1.6 which is a bit wider than the f1.7 found on the S8. This means that the LG V30 will be able to take in a little bit more light and should be a strong low light performer compared to a lot of other flagship phones. The Google Pixel has an aperture of f2.0.

The Ultra Wide Angle 13 MP camera has a narrower aperture of f1.9. Don’t get us wrong, these apertures are seriously large and high end for these tiny camera sensors found on our smartphones. This Wide Angle lens, however, does not come with Autofocus (but usually everything will be in focus, aka large depth of field so no big worries here).

Power House Specs and High End Design

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  • Beautiful 6-inch P-OLED QHD+ FullVision Display
  • Snapdragon 835 processor
  • 4 GB RAM
  • Quad-DAC
  • HDR 10 compliant
  • 64 / 128 GB internal Storage + microSD expansion up to 2 TB
  • Included B&O Earphones in box

LG finally introduced their own OLED display into the LG V30. This makes the V30 the first LG flagship (the last one being the LG FLEX) to receive this vivid treatment. We are looking at a 6 – inch P-OLED display panel that takes up most of the front side with an approximated 81.2% screen-to-body ratio. The resolution is 2880 x 1440 (~537 ppi pixel density) and the display is protected in Gorilla Glass 5. Furthermore, the V30 will be Dolby Vision and HDR 10 compliant and operate on Android 7.1.2 (Nougat) with the LG UX 6.0+ custom OS on top.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 is no surprise. This is 2017’s high end silicon and it gets the job done. Regardless of what tasks you throw at the V30 the smartphone shouldn’t skip a beat. Coupled with the Adreno 540 we know that gaming performance, watching movies, multi-tasking, and the like will all be crunched before you can even bat an eye. The work horse is meant to be used for intense processes as it can take incredible low light photos, process Google DayDream VR, and Vulkan API console quality games quickly and effortlessly.

The LG V30 is undoubtedly the most slickest and well crafted flagship phone of the year. Many are excited for it. The V30 takes things to the next level for LG compared to all of the companies past iterations. The V30 certainly does have that same Infinity Display like quality to it (that of the Samsung Galaxy S8+ and the Note 8) but LG is taking the V30 to a different approach. The approach is a media power house with hardware that caters to content media creators. The sides of the screen curve ever so slightly which continues on to the back of the device, this makes holding the V30 a joy.

The V30 is incredibly compact and light weight despite it being chock full of high end specs, hardware, and military grade 810G + IP68 protection capabilities. The V30 weighs in at only 158g and it is covered in Gorilla Glass 5 material on the front and back. The only downsides to glass builds is the strong attraction they have to finger prints, oils, and smudges. LG includes a cleaning cloth in the box, however. The finger print sensor is found in the traditional LG spot at the back and center which makes it easy for users to reach for and utilize. The fingerprint sensor on the back can also operate as your lock button as well.

LG V30’s Camera: Photography + Videography

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LG simply upgraded the dual camera on the V30 to the best the company can offer making this iteration quite exciting. First off, the main 16 MP camera comes with optical image stabilization (OIS) and a first-of-its-kind-in-a-smartphone wide and fast aperture of f1.6. This is 0.1 wider than the Samsung Galaxy S8 which should enable the lens to collect a bit more light in low light situations. The wide-angle lens beside it features a 120-degree field of view which is ultra wide. Unfortunately this camera does not come with OIS but it still comes with a wide f1.9 aperture lens.

Many folks prefer wide angle lenses compared to telephoto lenses found on the Note 8 and the iPhone 7 Plus. Sure, telephoto is great for portraits and getting that tight shot but generally smartphone users find most delight in capturing the whole “story”. LG called the “Portrait Mode” found on other flagship phones; “Too Gimmicky that should be reserved for cheaper devices”, however, because wide angle lenses can be a lot more useful we find it a joy to use.

A huge area LG improved upon was smartphone videography. A new feature called “Point Zoom” allows users to simply tap a part of the screen while recording and the camera will smoothly pan and zoom in on that point. This eliminates the whole jittery method of having to pinch and zoom!

LG boasts multiple recording options here one of which includes the LG Cine Log. This mode will enable users to capture video in one of many pre-made filters (pre-color grading). There are options ranging from “Blockbuster” to “Noir” and we found that they actually look pretty good. LG includes 15 filters initially but more will be on their way.

The Front facing selfie camera did not get any love this year as it remains a same old 5 MP sensor. LG has admitted that in order to achieve such thin bezels the selfie camera had to take a hit.

Battery Life

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The LG V30 comes with a 3,300 mAh battery which is the same one found in the Galaxy Note 8. The LG G6 also came with a 3,300 mAh battery and we found that they do last at least one day of good usage. Right now it is too early to judge how good the LG V30’s overall battery life is but we expect it to be pretty good. The only times we can see the battery life drain quickly is when we use the V30’s video / photo capabilities extensively for a project or other outing.

Conclusion

Overall, the LG V30 is an exciting phone. This is LG’s best yet and it includes the best of many worlds from various manufacturers. The phone is beautiful to look at, incredibly light, and built with the best materials available. They did not skimp much on the hardware components bringing in the latest high end processors, RAM chipset’s, internal storages, and that bezel-less P-OLED panel. The box includes your very own B&O earbuds which we found to be the best earbuds one could find included in a box.

The camera functions are a blast to play with and we know many will have great opportunities met to create awesome content with the V30. The fast f/1.6 aperture will assist you greatly in low light situations while the Cine Log filters will add to your creative tastes.

The cost of the LG V30 is expected to be high. However, this device ticks many boxes for many people so we will not be surprised to see the LG V30 to become one of the most anticipated and most popular premium flagship of 2017.