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How the iPhone X Is Opening New Frontiers for Developers

With Apple’s exciting keynote on Tuesday, September 12, it seems like Tim Cook and the Apple team blew open the doors of opportunity for aspiring iPhone developers.  With two new models announced, developers have a whole new frontier of options to explore, including a couple of totally new technologies that could prove to be just as influential as previous Apple innovations.  In this blog, we will explore three of the major changes that the new models of iPhone will bring and what they mean for developers.

  1.  Facial Recognition

One of the most impressive revelations of the keynote was the reveal of significantly improved facial recognition technology that will be added to the iPhone X.  This facial recognition technology is going to be integrated with a number of security features at launch.  In fact, facial recognition technology is going to fully replace fingerprint technology on the iPhone X as the default mode of secure access through the lock screen.  According to Apple, the new facial recognition technology implements learning algorithms that, in addition to only responding to your face, will continuously learn to recognize your face through different expressions and physical changes.

Apple’s facial recognition innovations come backed up by their long history with superb privacy and security design.  Facial data will be utilized for your purposes alone and will be encrypted by some of the best security algorithms in the world. The iPhone X will be able to utilize facial recognition based security for Apple pay and numerous bank apps.  For developers who need security options, this is another layer that can be added to protect users from fraudulent access.

In addition to user protection, advanced facial recognition with the ability to learn means new opportunities for developers of other types of apps, the most significant of which take advantage of the next item on our list.

  1.  ARKit

The new iPhones launch with the support of Apple’s newest version of ARKit, an alternate reality toolset that helps with the creation of immersive apps.  SnapChat has already integrated some of these features, using the facial mapping to let users put realistic masks and filters over their faces while taking SnapChat selfies or videos.  SnapChat isn’t the only app developer that can benefit, though.  With proper implementation and utilization of the ARKit, many companies can benefit.  Whether developing apps for cosmetics companies, hairdressers, or gaming companies, app developers have never had as much power at their fingertips.

Both the front-facing and rear-facing cameras on the new iPhones can be used to make immersive AR experiences using the new ARKit.  In addition, the iPhone 8 and X both come with a built-in gyroscope, accelerometer, proximity sensor, and light sensor which allow for very accurate motion and environment tracking.  Dual camera AR utilizing motion tracking allows for the manipulation of the user appearance at the same time as user environment, bringing AR one step closer to full-immersion.

  1.  Neural Engines

Perhaps the most exciting portion of the Apple announcement keynote was the revelation that new iPhones will include an AI chip known as the “neural engine.”  In addition to powering the facial recognition features mentioned above, the neural engine helps power Siri and can be called on by apps which need to process smart tasks without reducing battery life or slowing the core functions of the phone.

The inclusion of the neural engine marks the first consumer phone to include an AI engine, and other companies are following suit.  The building trend of including AI chips means that app developers are soon to have a lot more to work with.  Depending on the success of these early AI chips, the mobile industry may experience a paradigm shift.  App developers who are preparing for the future of mobile devices should prepare for the rise of newer, smarter, and faster AIs that function much differently than the intelligence-approximations of the past.  An AI chip in nearly everyone’s pocket opens the door to exciting developments in the hands of innovative developers.

  1.  Highest Quality Screens Yet

The newest Apple retina displays feature remarkably high resolutions and PPIs.  The iPhone X has a whopping 2436x1125 resolution display with 458 PPI, not to mention a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio.  For developers working on multi-media applications, this is understandably exciting news.  Higher quality screens mean better-looking video, games, and photographs.  Even reading apps are able to take advantage of this major jump in display quality.

Apple is no stranger to quality displays, but the step up from the previous generation of displays is significant; the iPhone 7 plus, for reference, had a 1920x1080 resolution screen with 401 ppi and a contrast ratio of 1300:1.  Web developers designing mobile sites are going to have more visual options available now that a large number of users will be able to view material on extremely high-definition screens.

With extreme high-definition screens, AI on the rise, and alternate reality applications becoming a thing of the present, the new age of iPhones is ushering in changes that your company needs to be ready for.  Our experts can help you navigate new frontiers of tech.  Contact us through our website today at www.nixa.ca!

At Nixa, we are passionate about design and new technologies. We would be glad to share our passion with you.

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