Face ID on iPhone X is just as fast, if not faster, than Touch ID

Posted:
in iPhone edited October 2017
Much has been said about Face ID on iPhone X, but prospective customers are wondering how the new face-based recognition system performs against Apple's established Touch ID system. In our tests, Face ID is as fast, or in some cases faster, than its predecessor.




The entire process, from setup to authentication, is snappy.

To set up Touch ID, Apple requires users to scan their finger multiple times, in a variety of positions and grips, to log an accurate image of a provisioned digit. Users have to repeat this process of lifting and touching down on the Touch ID sensor to enter additional authenticated fingers.

By comparison, all Face ID needs is two quick facial scans and you're done. The procedure requires users move their head in a circle so the TrueDepth camera can capture and model their face from different angles. This process is performed twice for accuracy.



Face ID's speed is more apparent in real-world use. The system unlocks iPhone X in about the time it takes to raise the device from a table up to a comfortable position in front of our face. From there, a simple swipe up from the gesture bar delivers us to the home screen.

When it works -- which for us is most of the time -- the process is frictionless, so much so that it makes Touch ID feel clunky in comparison.

Unscientific testing suggests Face ID performs on par with Touch ID in terms of raw speed. While it was difficult to perform both unlock gestures at the same time -- press and hold for Touch ID in one hand, raise, gaze and swipe for Face ID in another -- both appeared to reach the home screen at the same time. It should be noted that iPhone X actually unlocks before the lock/unlock animation completes.

More importantly, using Face ID is a seamless experience. Users can even swipe up to reach the home screen as Face ID is processing.

Apple iPhone and iPad owners have over the past few years trained themselves to use the built-in fingerprint sensor. For many, laying a finger on the home button is instinctive. With Face ID, there is no physical prerequisite to entry aside from looking at iPhone, an action performed naturally when using a portable device.



As seen above, Face ID authentication will be a boon not only for banal device unlocking, but also for Apple Pay and third-party apps.

Face ID is also flexible. Gaze detection, essential for secure recognition, does not necessitate the phone be located directly in front of a user's face. While the system does not operate at extreme angles, likely a security provision, iPhone X does recognize users when held slightly askew. It also works when rotated, for example when iPhone X is held in landscape mode.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 47
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,066member
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
  • Reply 2 of 47
    SoliSoli Posts: 7,625member
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    1) Touch ID also "works most of the time" and I doubt any statistically relevant number has abandoned it for that reason. Only those with rare and unique conditions that make Touch ID "fail more of the time" have stated they disabled it, as far as I've read.

    2) Apple had a wonderful YoY iPhone update released last month that if they thought Face ID wasn't ready for primetime I'm certain they'd not have announced and released it this year.
    racerhomiejbdragonnetmageredgeminipawlymmrboba1tycho_macuserjony0StrangeDaysbb-15
  • Reply 3 of 47
    rf9rf9 Posts: 68member
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    Touch ID only works “most of the time” and people haven’t abandoned it.  I know it fails occasional for me.  It downright fails a lot of the time if your fingers are sweaty or wet.
    FaceID has to be as good at or better than TouchID.
    edited October 2017 netmageredgeminipawlymmrboba1JFC_PAYoSamCapsFanjony0StrangeDaysbb-15
  • Reply 4 of 47
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    juehoe
  • Reply 5 of 47
    Guys, just read the verge review for a better balanced opinion.
  • Reply 6 of 47
    saltyzip said:
    Guys, just read the verge review for a better balanced opinion.
    If it was written by Nilay “user-hostile and stupid” Patel, I’m not interested. 
    netmagecreativeoneredgeminipawlymtycho_macuserwatto_cobraStrangeDays
  • Reply 7 of 47
    Ah yeah, don't read anything by Nilay Patel if you're wanting a realistic fault to be found. While I appreciate a reviewer who will try to find the edge cases where a feature will fail, Nilay just seems bent on creating a clickbait headline and will pretty much manufacture unrealistic scenarios to get there. His review of the X is no exception to this, and plenty of people have already pointed out the unusual steps he took to make face ID fail.

    As for Face ID being quicker than Touch ID, this is true in certain circumstances such as the screen being activated from notifications, or if you pick up your phone without your finger already on the Touch ID sensor. However in a scenario where your thumb/finger is already resting on the Touch ID sensor, then this will be marginally faster than FaceID.

    However this is really a testament to the speed of Face ID, as Touch ID is very nearly instantaneous. 
  • Reply 8 of 47
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    TouchID fails all the time for me. Sweaty fingers, dirty screen, gloves in the winter (just doesn't work), I cut my thumb a few weeks ago and had to use my left hand for a week to unlock my phone. I can't wait for FaceID. 
    netmagecaliredgeminipawlymJFC_PAStrangeDaysdanh
  • Reply 9 of 47
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 3,759member
    rysmithaz said:
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    TouchID fails all the time for me. Sweaty fingers, dirty screen, gloves in the winter (just doesn't work), I cut my thumb a few weeks ago and had to use my left hand for a week to unlock my phone. I can't wait for FaceID. 
    Yes, I sliced my thumb with a  razor and had to use a different finger. When I complained about it, my friends told me I had taken the expression “first world problem” to a new and less exciting level. 
    YoSamCapsFanjony0watto_cobraapres587
  • Reply 10 of 47
    rysmithaz said:
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    TouchID fails all the time for me. Sweaty fingers, dirty screen, gloves in the winter (just doesn't work), I cut my thumb a few weeks ago and had to use my left hand for a week to unlock my phone. I can't wait for FaceID. 
    Thanks for letting the world know which digit you use for TouchID. Instead of choosing one from ten it is now only one from two. You have made your phone a whole lot less secure. May I humbly suggest that you disable TouchID right now.

  • Reply 11 of 47
    Will FaceID work, when the iPhone is mounted at the dashboard of the car? My phone is not mounted directly in front of me. It is about 30 centimetres on the side. I can easily unlocked it with my finger. I assume, that this would no more possible with FaceID.

    I am planning to upgrade from my iPhone 6 Plus. Probably I will go for a iPhone 8 Plus, instead the iPhone X...
  • Reply 12 of 47
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 3,759member
    juehoe said:
    Will FaceID work, when the iPhone is mounted at the dashboard of the car? My phone is not mounted directly in front of me. It is about 30 centimetres on the side. I can easily unlocked it with my finger. I assume, that this would no more possible with FaceID.

    I am planning to upgrade from my iPhone 6 Plus. Probably I will go for a iPhone 8 Plus, instead the iPhone X...
    FaceID works at angles and from a distance, but more importantly, you shouldn’t be dicking around with your phone while you’re driving. 
    netmageirnchrizadm1redgeminipaJFC_PAtycho_macuseruraharadanh
  • Reply 13 of 47
    adm1adm1 Posts: 831member
    rysmithaz said:
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    TouchID fails all the time for me. Sweaty fingers, dirty screen, gloves in the winter (just doesn't work), I cut my thumb a few weeks ago and had to use my left hand for a week to unlock my phone. I can't wait for FaceID. 
    Thanks for letting the world know which digit you use for TouchID. Instead of choosing one from ten it is now only one from two. You have made your phone a whole lot less secure. May I humbly suggest that you disable TouchID right now.

    1 from 20*. Toes work too. /s
  • Reply 14 of 47
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,684member
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    With more than a single user? 
    ;)

    Seriously tho, and this is not a black-mark on Face ID: The limitation of one face to one phone may be an inconvenience that some buyers may not have considered. Personally I think it's relatively common for a husband/wife to register the spouse's fingerprint as an option, and for Mom and/or Dad to add their fingerprint to the young son and daughter's phone, "just in case". That's not an option with Face ID. Remembering someone else's Apple-recommended long alphanumeric password is going to be a necessity for some families if they're Face ID committed, and it's going to take longer and be less convenient than simply tapping on the fingerprint reader as Mom is accustomed to when Dad's phone rings and he's driving.  Just something to keep in mind.
    edited November 2017 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 15 of 47
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 3,759member
    gatorguy said:
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    With more than a single user? 
    ;)

    Seriously tho, and this is not a black-mark on Face ID: The limitation of one face to one phone may be an inconvenience that some buyers may not have considered. Personally I think it's relatively common for a husband/wife to register the spouse's fingerprint as an option, and for Mom and/or Dad to add their fingerprint to the young son and daughter's phone, "just in case". That's not an option with Face ID. Remembering someone else's Apple-recommended long alphanumeric password is going to be a necessity for some families if they're Face ID committed, and it's going to take longer and be less convenient than simply tapping on the fingerprint reader as Mom is accustomed to when Dad's phone rings and he's driving.  Just something to keep in mind.
    You don’t need to unlock an iPhone to answer it. I’m pretty sure a whole crowd of people have told you this before. 
    JFC_PAlukeiwatto_cobraStrangeDaysurahara
  • Reply 16 of 47
    gatorguy said:
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    With more than a single user? 
    ;)

    Seriously tho, and this is not a black-mark on Face ID: The limitation of one face to one phone may be an inconvenience that some buyers may not have considered. Personally I think it's relatively common for a husband/wife to register the spouse's fingerprint as an option, and for Mom and/or Dad to add their fingerprint to the young son and daughter's phone, "just in case". That's not an option with Face ID. Remembering someone else's Apple-recommended long alphanumeric password is going to be a necessity for some families if they're Face ID committed, and it's going to take longer and be less convenient than simply tapping on the fingerprint reader as Mom is accustomed to when Dad's phone rings and he's driving.  Just something to keep in mind.
    That's what the passcode is for. You don't need Touch ID or Face ID to answer a phone call. iOS has never required any type of authentication for answering calls, wether it's passcode or Touch ID... or even now Face ID. A lot of people would miss phone calls if that was required. Apple doesn't REQUIRE long alphanumeric passcodes. The default is 6 numeric digits. My husband and I still use simple numeric passcodes. 
    JFC_PARayz2016watto_cobraStrangeDaysurahara
  • Reply 17 of 47
    wlymwlym Posts: 50member
    juehoe said:
    Will FaceID work, when the iPhone is mounted at the dashboard of the car? My phone is not mounted directly in front of me. It is about 30 centimetres on the side. I can easily unlocked it with my finger. I assume, that this would no more possible with FaceID.

    I am planning to upgrade from my iPhone 6 Plus. Probably I will go for a iPhone 8 Plus, instead the iPhone X...
    Another useful feature of FaceID is that drivers like you won't be able to play with their phones while driving! 
    JFC_PARayz2016watto_cobradanh
  • Reply 18 of 47
    gatorguy said:
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    With more than a single user? 
    ;)

    Seriously tho, and this is not a black-mark on Face ID: The limitation of one face to one phone may be an inconvenience that some buyers may not have considered. Personally I think it's relatively common for a husband/wife to register the spouse's fingerprint as an option, and for Mom and/or Dad to add their fingerprint to the young son and daughter's phone, "just in case". That's not an option with Face ID. Remembering someone else's Apple-recommended long alphanumeric password is going to be a necessity for some families if they're Face ID committed, and it's going to take longer and be less convenient than simply tapping on the fingerprint reader as Mom is accustomed to when Dad's phone rings and he's driving.  Just something to keep in mind.
    Is that an issue for a wife? She will always remember all the passwords of the husband.
  • Reply 19 of 47
    mrboba1mrboba1 Posts: 264member
    rysmithaz said:
    lkrupp said:
    “Works most of the time.” That’s a phrase I’m reading in other reviews also. Well, “most of the time” isn’t good enough. It has to work EVERY time or people will simply abandon it. If you have to repeat the process a second time once in a while that’s going to be be a problem. But let's assume that the AI involved will learn and get better with time.
    TouchID fails all the time for me. Sweaty fingers, dirty screen, gloves in the winter (just doesn't work), I cut my thumb a few weeks ago and had to use my left hand for a week to unlock my phone. I can't wait for FaceID. 
    Thanks for letting the world know which digit you use for TouchID. Instead of choosing one from ten it is now only one from two. You have made your phone a whole lot less secure. May I humbly suggest that you disable TouchID right now.

    YES ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS IDENTIFY THIS PERSON, FIND HIM/HER, AND THEN WE NEED ONLY TO TAKE HIS/HER THUMBS TO GET IN HIS/HER PHONE.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 20 of 47
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,684member
    Rayz2016 said:
    gatorguy said:
    Can you guys give us an example of when FaceID did not work?
    With more than a single user? 
    ;)

    Seriously tho, and this is not a black-mark on Face ID: The limitation of one face to one phone may be an inconvenience that some buyers may not have considered. Personally I think it's relatively common for a husband/wife to register the spouse's fingerprint as an option, and for Mom and/or Dad to add their fingerprint to the young son and daughter's phone, "just in case". That's not an option with Face ID. Remembering someone else's Apple-recommended long alphanumeric password is going to be a necessity for some families if they're Face ID committed, and it's going to take longer and be less convenient than simply tapping on the fingerprint reader as Mom is accustomed to when Dad's phone rings and he's driving.  Just something to keep in mind.
    You don’t need to unlock an iPhone to answer it. I’m pretty sure a whole crowd of people have told you this before. 
    Not necessarily to answer it (same on Android), it was just a general reference to a spouse having a reason to open your phone with your approval, or a father/mother needing to open a child's phone. I should not have mentioning answering a phone as one of those instances, so thanks for catching that. 

    ...and no I wasn't raising the issue as something that's serious either, only that it might be a consideration for families accustomed to using Touch ID to verify more than one person for phone access. There are use cases where more than one face ID would be preferable, particularly for children, which some buyers might not think about ahead of time. 
    edited November 2017
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