After waiting what seemed like a decade, I finally got my hands on the highly anticipated Apple iPhone X and my initial thoughts are it just feels right. I bought an iPhone 8 on its release and I was disappointed with it, there was very little difference to my 6s apart from being slightly quicker and having a better camera, so that was returned and the order was processed for the model that everyone has been anticipating, the iPhone X.
When holding the iPhone X, especially without the case, something about it reminds me of my first iPhone which was an iPhone 3G. It’s a bit larger, but its shape and presence in the hand harken back to the early days, and I really like it.
The iPhone X screen size comes in at 5.8″ while the iPhone 8 Plus is slightly smaller at 5.5″. However, the total dimensions of the iPhone X are only slightly larger than the iPhone 8 due to its edge-to-edge display.
With a screen size larger than the 8 Plus (5.8″ vs 5.5″) but with a body about the size of the 8, the iPhone X meets the best of all worlds. I find the size perfect for use with one hand.
I find the glass back to be far more tactile/grippy, I feel confident using the phone without a case.
This is definitely the most amazing display I’ve ever seen on a smartphone. Colours pop, blacks are truly black, and contrast feels just right. Sometimes it can be challenging to see the iPhone screen while using in super bright environments, but it is a lot easier than previous models.
The main feature that everyone is talking about has to be the camera, simply put it is brilliant. The most incredible feature has to be its Portrait Mode which basically makes every photo you take look fantastic by using AI to determine which parts of your shot need to be focused, and which can be a little blurry in order to give you that DSLR, depth of field type imagery. It can also technically be found on both the iPhone 7 Plus and the iPhone 8 Plus but on those phones, it’s only on the rear-facing (other people) camera. The main difference between the X and other models is that it has Portrait Mode on both the rear camera and the front-facing camera. Resulting in glorious selfies.
Apple states that the iPhone X’s battery life is able to support up to 21 hours of talk time, 12 hours of cellular use, 13 hours worth of video playback, and 60 hours of audio playback. I don’t know how they came up with these figures but the battery life has impressed me. It lasts me throughout the typical day of waking up at 6:30 and then going back to bed at around 10 with only a quick charge as and when I get the chance. Compared to previous models, I’d say the battery has seen a massive improvement.
The Face ID is enabled by the TrueDepth camera and is set up moving your head from side to side in front of the camera. By simply moving your head round while looking at the screen, the camera will create a precision depth map of your face made up of over 30,000 pinpoints. This results in a very impressive result meaning that I no longer have to enter my passcode to get onto the device, I simply just look at it. I have had no faults as of yet and it has worked flawlessly every time.
A few tips to adjust to the new iPhone X Design
You can still view your battery percentage.
One of the very first things I do, whenever I set up a new iPhone, is going to Settings > Battery and then I turn on the Battery Percentage. I find this vital to see how much battery I actually have left. Without the percentage on, both 20% and 5% look like the same slim red bar of battery life.
When I powered on my iPhone X and went to turn on this feature in settings and I didn’t find it, which threw me off completely. I looked and looked and didn’t find it. I can see the reasonings to why they got rid of the feature (because the notch eats up the screen real estate needed to display the extra horizontal data)
After a quick google search, I discovered it’s on by default in the Control Center. Now, to check the precise percentage of remaining battery, you have to swipe down from the top right corner. While I would prefer to have it on all the time, I’m glad it’s not entirely gone.
Quickly switching between Applications
My favourite new interface trick is swiping across the bottom of the screen to quickly switch between apps. It functions a lot like Command-Tab on your Mac and iPad Pro. I find it a lot quicker than double-clicking the home button.
Camera button on Lock Screen
There is now a Camera button on the lock screen. It’s a nice shortcut and I’ve used it a couple of times when I need to open the camera quickly to get a shot.
The Bottom Line
I love the iPhone X, there I said it. It’s fresh, fast and most importantly it’s beautiful. I’m still adapting to its new interface and not having a home button, but the size is great and the screen is great for watching videos and taking photos. The telephoto lens on the camera makes it a no brainer and I feel like I don’t need to take my DSLR everywhere with me now.
For me, it’s safe to say the upgrade to the iPhone X is the best phone upgrade I’ve experienced since switching from an iPhone 3g to a 5 back in 2012.