Firmware reveals details about ‘iPhone X’ 3D sensors, Face ID, internal components and more

Developers have been mining the latest Apple firmware release for every last detail about the new iPhones ahead of tomorrow’s Apple event, and Steve Troughton-Smith claims the much-hyped OLED iPhone will bear the name “iPhone X,” launching alongside an iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus that are skipping the usual “s” cycle naming conventions this time around. KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via MacRumors) also seemed to put another long-standing question to bed, stating that all three colors of the “iPhone X” will feature black front bezels to provide “better aesthetic design,” blending the narrow cutouts in with the new OLED screen for a sleeker look than a while border would. Kuo said the iPhone X adds structured light transmitters and receivers to the existing iPhone’s sensor package, allowing it to “collect depth information, integrating with 2D image data from front camera to build the complete 3D image.”
Those sensors are what allow the the iPhone X to add the new Face ID security feature, and developer Guilherme Rambo provided a preview for how the setup process for Apple’s new authentication system will work. Much like Touch ID’s setup involves scanning a fingerprint from many angles, users will rotate their faces in a circle within the frame as the camera creates images from multiple angles to craft a 3D reference. Rambo also discovered how the iPhone X’s screen is likely to handle using the areas to the left and right of the cameras cutout to display information, with the phone usually displaying the location indicator and time on the left and information about WiFi, cellular signal strength and battery power on the right. New animations will make the most of the small right area — when the device is plugged into power, the battery charge icon will slide to the right, nudging the WiFi and cellular icons out of the way while a charging icon briefly appears to the right, only to slide back in a few seconds, for example.

Staying with the new OLED display, 9to5Mac seems to have discovered a hint that Apple is concerned about the screen experiencing burn-in, leaving a residual image behind if the display is left on with the same screen up for an extended period of time. OLED panels are more at risk for burn-in than the current iPhone’s LCD, so Apple has included support for “burn-in mitigation,” but what that will entail or how successful it will be at addressing the issue is still an open question. Behind the screen, Troughton-Smith claims the iPhone X will feature 3 GB of RAM, and other leaks predict a six core A11 Fusion chip, including four Mistral cores and two Monsoon ones. The iPhone 8 Plus will also get 3 GB of RAM, but the iPhone 8 will only get 2 GB. Rambo uncovered one last tidbit, confirming that some iPhones will have software support for wireless charging at launch, but whether that’s just the iPhone X or all of the new iPhones is still unclear.

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