Apple didn't notch the front of the iPhone X in vain (poll results)

Are you using the TrueDepth camera kit on your iPhone X?

Yes, for Face ID unlocking and/or mobile payment authorization
Yes, for Animoji mainly
Yes, for both of the above
Nah, I haven't even set a facial scan up

We asked you last week whether you are taking real advantage of Apple's notch-inducing TrueDepth camera setup at the front of the iPhone X, be it for unlocking the phone or pulling your tongue out in an Animoji-ed frenzy. It turns out that Apple didn't cut the front of its most expensive phone in vain, as just 25% of the respondents didn't bother to set up face recognition. The majority, or about 57%, are using the TrueDepth camera for Face ID purposes, maybe since Apple didn't leave other biometric options on the X for that, while just a small percentage are having a kick with Animojis, and that's that.

Face ID, Animoji, Memoji and facial scanning mobile payment authorization are features that Apple all of a sudden decided will be the future of mobile biometry, resulting in a notch-y design compromise that was quickly replicated across the Android universe. Apple's Face ID tech on the iPhone X relies on four components - structured light transmitter and receiver, a front-facing camera, and a time of flight/proximity sensor. 

These sensors and cameras are all clustered in the "notch" at the top bezel. The structured light ones collect depth information which is combined with images taken with the front-facing camera to produce a 3D map of your face using software algorithms. Apple uses the TrueDepth setup for Animoji and Memoji, too, as well as for, say, authorizing mobile payments.

The iPhone X hit initial production snags precisely on account of the fact that one of the component suppliers couldn't churn out sensors fast enough to satisfy the quality control. Apple has since doubled down on the 3D-mapping Face ID technology, investing $390 million in Finisar, a US maker of said depth-mapping sensors. The tech is no longer exclusive to the iPhone X, as Xiaomi's Mi 8 SE and Oppo's Find X are also using 3D-sensing kits for unlocking their phones, but Apple fans argue that its execution is arguably smoother. 

Related phones

iPhone X
  • Display 5.8" 1125 x 2436 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 7 MP front
  • Processor Apple A11 Bionic, Hexa-core, 2390 MHz
  • Storage 256 GB
  • Battery 2716 mAh(21h 3G talk time)



1. Phullofphil

Posts: 1762; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Probably not a good site for this poll. I would hope that everybody that owned one answered but I can safely assume that there are trolls messing up this a little. My guess would be that most people that own a iPhone X set up Face ID atliest once to try it out. If you have not then why are you even on this site to begin with. You should be tech savvy and therefore should have atliest tried it out to review it at the minimum.

2. worldpeace

Posts: 3129; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

765 votes is really low compared to other polls that usually reach 4000-5000 votes. So yeah, most people here just skip this pools, maybe this polls is slightly more legit than other pools in this site.

24. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

How about add an option in the poll like"would you prefer NO notch". Let's face it Apple is using the two tiny sections of the iPhone X for bragging rights when it comes to screen to body ratio. Plus Apple can then say their screen is 5.8" inches in length. But if they didn't have the two tiny pieces of screen on either side, then the screen size would only be 5.6" inches in length.

26. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Not to mention it's a poll that will never be accurate.

6. GreenMan

Posts: 2697; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

@Phullofphil: So are you suggesting that 'lesser people' like me; who can't afford the $1,000 iPhone X possess no right to vote in a public survey? This is against democracy and our constitutional rights. Err... Wait, I'm taking it wrong. Forget what I said! G'Day!

29. Leo_MC

Posts: 7218; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Why would you take a poll with the question "are you USING the TrueDepth camera" when you don't have a device that has that feature?

11. strategic_developer

Posts: 1627; Member since: Jul 17, 2018

Why? Because you say so? There are people who have iPhones who may only prefer to use their pin, or password. Just because it is there, doesn't mean I have to use it or will. Isn't this you guys argument with Samsung phones? My device has Iris scanning. Guess what, I dont use it because it still has what I prefer, an FPS. Apple tried to force its usage by removing the FPS option. Face ID is slow vs FPS. And the fact you have to swipe after the u lock is completely stupid.

3. youssef44

Posts: 547; Member since: Apr 29, 2014

The worst thing in iPhone X and in the upcoming iPhones...

4. CreeDiddy

Posts: 2148; Member since: Nov 04, 2011

The "Face" of mobile...

5. cmdacos

Posts: 4113; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

The top answer was already set up to win, it was a pointless poll. Of course most are using it for unlocking as it's easier than entering a password all the time.

7. baldilocks

Posts: 1494; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

All of which could have been achieved without a notch....

10. Nine1Sickness

Posts: 896; Member since: Jan 30, 2011

When I see the notch, all I see is lazy engineering and bad engineering management.

28. Vokilam

Posts: 1181; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

What a minute, cutting a notch out in a display without seeing jugged pixels arrangement, bending the foldable screen backwards all the way on both ends, and fitting state of the art 3D sensors that were about 12 inches long just a year ago when Apple bought the tech - that’s lazy engineering? What do you call just having a full bezel on top and bottom just to fit a camera and couple proximity sensors? That’s not lazy?

14. Valdomero

Posts: 666; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

True, but I believe they wanted to be differentiated from the rest of OEMs that started going bezeless. Of course, we all agree they could've done something way better than that horripilation, but you can't deny that we all recognize that horrible notch and think "Apple", that's brand recognition.

8. GreenMan

Posts: 2697; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

"Apple didn't notch the front of the iPhone X in vain." Of course it didn't, my dear. But... Was it necessary? Now that's the right question! Do you think the top and bottom bezels of The Note 9 divide opinions as much as the notch? Tell you what; how about another poll regarding Note 9's bezels vs. iPhone X's notch? That will surely put things into perspective! Oh well, G'Day!

9. Nine1Sickness

Posts: 896; Member since: Jan 30, 2011

Still would rather have a notchless phone than all the gimmicks that comes with the notch.

12. strategic_developer

Posts: 1627; Member since: Jul 17, 2018

Face ID and ths Notch are OEMS attempt to force you to use something, that you probably wouldnt. They all do it, and it's not a big deal. What the problem is, is that fans will knock such a feature as gimmicky and useless on another brand of phone, and held it as innovative when their own does it. Face ID on the iPhone is less secure do to the fact it has been proven to be the easiest to fool. Unlike iris scanning where duplication is a complete impossibility without surgery. FPS is faster, better, less power draining and far more useful.

19. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Do you have ANY evidence whatsoever to back the claims you've made here, TechieXP?

30. Leo_MC

Posts: 7218; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Yes, he has all the evidence, but it is only available for the members of "I'm dumb and I hate Apple club".

13. irossdrummer

Posts: 366; Member since: Jan 17, 2015

probably bc Apple didn't give them a choice, no fingerprint reader in it.. could've easily been put on back

15. Valdomero

Posts: 666; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

I agree with you, they should've put a FPS on the back, they could even put it in the apple logo or the power button.

16. irossdrummer

Posts: 366; Member since: Jan 17, 2015

right! they could've made it a huge thing putting it in the apple logo, or just in the power button like sony

31. Leo_MC

Posts: 7218; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

I have decided to use, as my main device, an Android phone with fp on the back: NO ONE should EVER-EVER build such a monstrosity! It's so bad to have the fp on the back that I decided to use iris/face unlock (which I find it to work rather ok, considering that I didn't get the X, because I didn't like face id). So, a good choice but different than what the customer is used to is better than a bad choice.

33. irossdrummer

Posts: 366; Member since: Jan 17, 2015

how is it really THAT bad? The S8 has a horrible placement but they fixed that on the S9 so that it's naturally where your finger lands, it's nice and comfortable to naturally place your finger there when you're taking it out of your pocket where my phone's already unlocked by the time I'm looking at it. The pixels have a great placement too along with lots of LGs. I have the Iris/face scan on too along with fingerprint but it's so tedious and I have to hold it up for it to work, it sometimes works automatically before I get to my fingerprint but that's very little often. a back fingerprint is so nice and natural, don't know why you're so against it. Maybe try another phone, maybe it's just your certain phone.

34. Leo_MC

Posts: 7218; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Most of the time my phone sits on my desk so for every little interaction I have to pick it up; with a back fps, I have to search it with my finger for a few moments. Taking the phone out of the pocket (no matter what brand: I have Huawei, Xiaomi, Samsung and Apple) means grabbing it on the lower region (at most 5 cm from the bottom); when I'm taking it out of the jacket my thumb is resting on the fps (on the iPhone), the same happens when I take it out of my jeans (I don't reach on the bottom of my pocket just to grab the damn phone, because I would ruin a perfect tailored suite or a perfect fitted jeans). Sorry, back fps is not happening for me.

17. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1318; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

Aesthetically, a completely even bezel on the top would be better.

18. baldilocks

Posts: 1494; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

It's hard to take animoji seriously. Should be a 3rd party download/-add-on.

20. monkeyb

Posts: 409; Member since: Jan 17, 2018

2 Things: - There is a good chance that a lot (not all) people who voted for "Nah, I haven't even set a facial scan up" are not iPhone X users and just trolls. - I remember when Apple introduced the second gen FP scanner on the 6S. It was way more advanced than the first one. If Apple will improve their face scanning tech then that is all users need to care about.

21. tedkord

Posts: 17312; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

There's also a good chance that people who voted for the face unlock multiple times. So what? It's not a scientific poll.

27. monkeyb

Posts: 409; Member since: Jan 17, 2018

Yes there is. And yes its not a scientific poll. I'm just expressing an opinion :). Also the main point I wanted to make is no tech site is considering what an improved face scanning tech might bring to the table.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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