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Apple iPhone X review – a bold and innovative step into the future

The interest around the iPhone X could not be higher and harks back to the time when we were waiting for the arrival of the very first iPhone. That’s the sort of anticipation there is for this device.

And the iPhone X certainly doesn’t disappoint. It is a massive departure from what we usually get from an iPhone.

For a start, the home button that’s been a fixture of the device for 10 years, is gone.

And in its place, is even more real estate for the dazzling 5.8-inch Super Retina display.

It goes edge to edge and is one of the best screens we’ve ever seen on an Apple product.

We’ve had the iPhone X for a few days now and we can already say it’s one of the best smartphones we’ve ever used.

DESIGN

Apple is at the top of its game when it came to designing the iPhone X.

The screen and the rear glass panel are merged together with surgical grade stainless steel that gives the device a noticeable shine.

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What we were impressed with right off the bat was the size of the iPhone X.

It has a 5.8-inch display yet is a lot smaller than the iPhone 8 Plus and not much bigger than the iPhone 8.

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Its size is just right and is an excellent middle ground for users who thought the larger iPhone was too big but wanted more than the 4.7-inch iPhone.

We nicknamed the iPhone X Goldilocks – because it is just right.

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NO HOME BUTTON

The saying goes, you only miss something when it’s gone. That’s definitely not the case with the home button.

Yes, we had 10 years using that home button but it only took minutes to get used to not having it.

The iPhone X is quite intuitive and it’s not hard to learn how to navigate the system without the physical buttons we have relied on for a decade.

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A simple sweep up from the bottom of the screen is the gesture you need to get back to the home screen.

Sweeping down from the right side of the top reveals the control centre, sweep down from the left side of the notch and you’ve got your notifications.

iPhone X also makes use of the largest side button to summon Siri (you can still say Hey Siri without touching the device) and also to activate Apple Pay.

We also had to work out how to turn the phone off. Usually a long press of the side key brings up the option to power down.

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But doing that now brings Siri to the screen. Instead hold one of the volume keys and the side key to turn it off.

And even with a screen that takes up the entire front face of the phone, there is no issue with opening apps accidentally just by gripping the device, like we’ve seen with other smartphones.

There is still enough bezel around the display to prevent this from happening.

FACE ID

When the iPhone X lost the home button it also lost Touch ID so there is no way to use your fingerprint anymore.

Instead, we’ve got Face ID and straight up will tell you it’s better and faster than Touch ID.

Setting up Face ID took a minute and we had to just draw, in view of the iPhone X front TrueDepth camera, a circle with our nose so it could get a good look at our face and establish more than 30,000 points of recognition.

And it works really fast.

By the time we picked up the iPhone X and swept up from the bottom of the screen – it had already recognised our face and unlocked the phone.

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It was a split second. Anyone concerned that Face ID wasn’t up to the task had better think again.

It’s actually made accessing the iPhone even faster.

And that also applies to Apple Pay which, after a double tap on the side button, can read your face instantly ready for you to make your payment.

Face ID only unlocks the phone. It doesn’t bring up the home screen.

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That’s a good thing because Face ID is so fast you might have unlocked the phone just by glancing at it, put it in your pocket and opened in at or made a call without meaning to.

The way Face ID now is perfect – it unlocks the device instantly but is ready for you to make your next move.

CAMERA

Apple has once again nailed it with the camera.

On the rear panel are two 12 megapixel cameras with dual image stabilisation.

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Also on board is new colour filter with deeper pixels along with an improved image signal processor.

The result are stunning images with true colours and tremendous results in low light.

It has a new quad LED True Tone flash to keep the light even in the foreground and background of your photos.

One of our favourite features is Portrait Mode which allows you to capture excellent depth of field images.

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With the iPhone X another feature still in beta is Portrait Lighting which uses depth mapping to show you the different effects of the lighting mode is at your fingertips.

This can have a dramatic effect to the image.

And the great improvement is the fact that Portrait Mode is also possible through the iPhone X front camera as well.

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Now your selfies these will look better and more professional than ever.

PERFORMANCE

The iPhone X is powered by Apple’s A11 Bionic processor. It has a six core CPU that can delegate performance and efficiency better than ever before.

Opening apps, moving between tasks and watching content was as smooth as silk and lightning fast.

There is also a neural engine which gives the phone a level of artificial intelligence to learn and improve.

It can recognise people’s faces, places and objects and is also powering the new Face ID feature. No wonder it’s so fast.

OTHER FEATURES

Like the iPhone 8, the iPhone X has wireless charging which also works when the device is inside a case.

And customers will be pleased to know the iPhone X is also water resistant. It is microscopically sealed so you’re safe from water and dust.

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BATTERY

Another big tick for the iPhone X is the battery.

For our review, we got more than 24 hours usage on a single charge.

In fact, 24 hours after charging to 100 per cent, we still had 22 per cent left on the battery.

And this was with full use with wi-fi and Bluetooth running and emails, calls, listening to music and audiobooks and using social media and a wide range of apps.

PRICE

The only fault, if it can actually be called that, we could find with this brilliant phone was the price tag.

It the most expensive iPhone Apple has produced. But it’s also by far the best.

It’s why a Rolls Royce costs more than a Holden – the iPhone X is simply a class above.

We think it’s worth it, as do the millions of customers who scrambled to preorder the device and the thousands that will be camped outside Apple Stores when it goes on sale this week.

The iPhone X 64GB is $1579 and the iPhone X 256GB is $1829.

VERDICT

Apple has absolutely hit a homerun with the iPhone X. It’s a bold step into the future – a journey customers will find irresistible.

After 10 years of producing excellent iPhones, Apple has shown it can still create an innovative and fresh product that will stun users.

iPhone wallpaper - a drone shot takenby Stephen Fenech at Maroubra Beach in Sydney, Australia. ©StephenFenech
iPhone wallpaper – a drone shot takenby Stephen Fenech at Maroubra Beach in Sydney, Australia. ©StephenFenech

The interest around the iPhone X could not be higher and harks back to the time when we were waiting for the arrival of the very first iPhone. That's the sort of anticipation there is for this device. And the iPhone X certainly doesn’t disappoint. It is a massive departure from what we usually get from an iPhone. For a start, the home button that's been a fixture of the device for 10 years, is gone. And in its place, is even more real estate for the dazzling 5.8-inch Super Retina display. It goes edge to edge and is one…

iPhone X

Rating - 100%

100%

PROS: Stunning design, intuitive gesture controls, magnificent display, excellent camera, just right size, great battery performance.

CONS: Expensive

VERDICT: Apple has absolutely hit a homerun with the iPhone X. It's a bold step into the future - a journey customers will find irresistible. After 10 years of producing excellent iPhones, Apple has shown it can still create an innovative and fresh device that will stun users.

User Rating: 2.43 ( 14 votes)

About Stephen Fenech

Stephen is the Tech Guide editor and one of Australia's most respected tech journalists. He is a regular on radio and TV talking about the latest tech news, products and trends.

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