Apple has unveiled a new device that it believes represents the “future of the smartphone” – the iPhone X.
A key feature of the handset is Face ID, which has been designed to revolutionise authentication and mobile payment.
This feature uses a state-of-the-art TrueDepth camera system to accurately map and recognise a person's face.
As a result, only that person will be able to unlock the handset, access secure apps, enable Apple Pay and use other features of the device.
Face ID is also able to adapt to a person's physical changes in appearance, which means it still recognises the owner even if they age over time or make cosmetic changes such as growing a beard.
Added security comes from the fact that the data is processed within the device itself, rather than in the cloud, while Face ID won't recognise a photo or mask of a person's face, meaning it can't be spoofed.
The TrueDepth front camera that makes Face ID possible also delivers the goods when it comes to its more traditional function of taking great photos.
This seven-megapixel camera features auto image stabilisation, wide colour capture and precise exposure control.
Meanwhile, a redesigned dual 12-megapixel rear camera system offers dual optical image stabilisation, a new colour filter, deeper pixels and faster autofocus in low light.
In addition, the new quad LED True Tone Flash offers greater uniformity of light and includes Slow Sync, meaning backgrounds and foregrounds will be more evenly lit.
Another revolutionary feature of the iPhone X is its “stunning” all-screen display that follows the curve of the device.
The device boasts what Apple says is “the most durable glass ever in a smartphone”, reinforced by a highly polished, surgical-grade stainless steel band. That means it's both elegant and durable, and resistant to both water and dust.
According to Jony Ive, chief design officer at Apple, the company has sought to create an iPhone that is “all display” for more than a decade.
“The iPhone X is the realisation of that vision,” he commented.
“With the introduction of iPhone ten years ago, we revolutionised the mobile phone with Multi-Touch. iPhone X marks a new era for iPhone – one in which the device disappears into the experience.”
Philip Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing, added that the iPhone X is the “future of the smartphone”.
“It is packed with incredible new technologies, like the innovative TrueDepth camera system, beautiful Super Retina display and super-fast A11 Bionic chip with neural engine,” he observed.
“iPhone X enables fluid new user experiences, from unlocking your iPhone with Face ID, to playing immersive AR games, to sharing Animoji in Messages – it is the beginning of the next ten years for iPhone.”
The iPhone X will be available in silver and space grey in 64GB and 256GB models and comes with a starting price of £999.
Customers will be able to pre-order the handset from October 27th, while it will be rolled out in stores from November 3rd.