8 Questions Everyone Should Be Asking About iPhone X
Collage by Louisiana Mei Gelpi.

Yesterday was not only Ben McKenzie’s birthday, but Apple’s unveiling of the very new and very intimidating sounding iPhone X. Now, I’m not one to be hyped into buying the newest new thing (I really excelled in D.A.R.E. class) so whenever a new iPhone drops, I very much like to be excluded from the narrative. Still, I am probably what you would call “Team Apple.” For example, I just wondered if putting “Team” in front of proper nouns is still “a thing,” while typing this on my MacBook Pro and glaring at a calendar reminder going off on my iPhone 6.

Curious to see what’s literally in store for me once I finally get fed up with my 6’s battery life (or lack thereof, amirite) and 7s have become extinct, I came up with the following eight questions, which I guess I should’ve asked Siri, if I were truly committed to this overall Apple theme:

1. Can I keep calling it iPhone “EX”?

Because I definitely thought it was The iPhone X — as in, you know, the letter X — all day long. I was later informed that it isn’t a letter at all. It’s the Roman numeral X and thus pronounced “the iPhone TEN” (tomayto, tomahto; Levi-OH-sah, Levi-oh-SAR), in honor of the 10th anniversary of the iPhone. Speaking of numbers…

2. Are we still getting an iPhone 9?

Along with the iPhone X, Apple unveiled the new iPhone 8 (pronounced “eight”) and a larger 8 Plus (“eight-pluhss”). This makes sense considering 8 comes after 7 in the counting world and now, in iPhone world. But is everything going to get awkward when we backtrack to the iPhone 9 in a year? Is there no iPhone 9?! Did 7 eat 9?! Sorry, my childhood favorite number was 9. But really: Should we mentally and emotionally prepare to replace our shattered iPhone Xs (the “Ten” is entirely glass, front and back) with a newer iPhone 9 and a subsequent iPhone 10 — one-zero, pronounced “EX” — down the line?!?!

3. Should I read into the $999 price tag for clues about the iPhone 9?

You know me; I love me a good conspiracy theory, and yes, an iPhone X with 64GB of storage will set you back $999. Why not go with Roman numeral M (1000), I wonder? Anyway, that amount gets bumped down to $49.91 per month on Apple’s upgrade program, but that’s still two back-to-back 9s. The iPhone 8 starts at $699 which is one upside down 9 and two back-to-back 9s for everyone keeping track with me.

4. Is there such a thing as too much screen?

I’m sincerely asking this as I stare at my screen and you stare into yours to read this because the iPhone X is ALL SCREEN, which I must say, is very aesthetically pleasing, as most Apple products are. Gone are the days of that pesky circular “Home” button at the bottom of the device along with a good chunk of that other non-screen area at the top where people’s voices are projected into your ear if you’re old school and still make phone calls. Henceforth, swiping rules all, along with your face, which begs the question…

5. Do I officially have permission to forget every password ever?

According to Apple, “Your face is now your password,” which is excellent news because I literally always have my face with me at all times. I’ve never once lost it or forgotten it at home. Not once. Our pal X is equipped with a super Xenon-y thing called Face ID that scans and remembers your face so you can use it to unlock your phone, authenticate things and pay for other things. WITH YOUR FACE.

6. Are all of my coworkers prepared for me to do this at least twice a week once Face ID becomes ubiquitous?


Apple reassures us, “Machine learning lets Face ID adapt to physical changes in your appearance over time,” which includes aging, wearing sunglasses, hats and makeup, but we all know we need to at least try to outsmart the computers on a biweekly basis.

7. On a scale of 1 to X (10), how creepy is controlling emojis with your own face?

For some reason, the iPhone X’s front-facing camera allows you to control emojis, called ‘animoji.‘ “The TrueDepth camera analyzes more than 50 different muscle movements to mirror your expressions in 12 Animoji,” Apple explains. The effect is reminiscent of Snapchat face filters, except smaller and creepier because your human neck isn’t visible and it looks like you’ve possessed a poor emoji. But, Apple points out that this feature allows you to “reveal your inner panda, pig, or robot.” Still unpacking that. Maybe just FaceTime me in the meantime if you really love my subtle head nods and jaw movements that much, IDK.

8. Oh, how excited are you about wireless charging, btw?!

Because while both 8 and X are capable of wireless charging, Apple’s super convenient AirPower mat, which allows you to charge your X and other Apple accessories at once, won’t be available until sometime in 2018 🙃. But someone somewhere once said “good things come to those who wait” and I literally just bought a new iPhone charger.

SURPRISE, I actually have NINE questions: What are your initial thoughts about the latest addition to the iPhone fam?

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  • Ashley Hamilton

    But seriously why did they skip 9

    • ValiantlyVarnished

      Because Apple is extra about everything.

    • Maybe because iPhone was created 10 years ago? So X sounds better?

  • Arden

    This face as password thing has really sent me for a loop. What if it’s dark? What if I’m wearing a face mask?? What if it’s halloween and I really commit to a Darth Vader lewk???

  • are we all going to look goofy trying to line up our faces in front of our phone in line at the WF while we apple pay?

  • Abby

    My husband has declared he’s getting one of these and I don’t really get it. Especially the facial recognition, it sketches me out. His job will pay for it though, so I guess I don’t care!

  • Autumn

    The Face ID didn’t work during the live demo, which makes me real nervous. But I’m a skeptic and don’t trust the “first” version of something. And I’m still salty at Apple for getting rid of the headphone jack.

    • ericabeckster

      The amount of times I want to charge my phone and listen to music in my headphones is astounding. It truly makes me angry on a daily basis.

      • Adrianna

        I thought this would be a problem, but it’s rarely an issue for me. I’m pretty diligent about charging my phone at work. Low battery mode and limiting notifications really saves a lot of battery life.

        • ericabeckster

          It’s always when I’m at work charging and I want to listen to something. It’s not the end of the world, it just causes an internal eye roll.

      • TherapyCranes

        You can get an adapter that allows you to do both for like $20. Yes it’s annoying that you have to buy something to basically convert your phone to the older version, but better than being angry on a daily basis?

      • Shannon

        bluetooth headphones!

        that being said, I’m upset about the lack of headphone jack too.

    • Kristin

      Ugh every time I’m listening to music and need a charge, I have to choose! Damn you Apple.

    • Alison Dick

      it worked, he just picked up an iphone that had been restarted and hadn’t had the passcode put in yet. Like when your phone dies and you plug it in and it comes back to life and you have to put in your passcode before you can unlock it with your touchID. you can see on his screen during the demo it says “your passcode is required to enable faceID.”

      regardless, embarrassing.

  • Here’s my issue: the phone will never recognize “no makeup” me vs. “I spent 3 hours putting on my face” me.

    • Anne Dyer

      Slow clap. Laughing so hard.

  • Bria

    Facial recognition technology screams Big Brother. The future is scary.

  • Facial recognition… creepy. Animoji… creepy. I would probably opt for iPhone 8 that, hopefully, will cost a bit less (in Italy iPhone cost more than in US)

  • MK

    will facial recognition work while i’m asleep????? if i had an identical twin would i be able to get into her phone???? these are the Qs that kept me up last night

    • kay

      ah omg the sleeping thing is terrifying. apple did answer the twin thing tho and the answer is yes your twin can get into your phone

  • Geo Laird

    Honestly, since Steve Jobs has passed, Apple has lost it’s edge. With the exception of the facial recognition technology, all the “new” features they’ve hyped have been on other smartphones for a year or two at least. Even the larger screen has already been done. It doesn’t make sense anymore to spend that much on Apple products when you can get the same or better thing elsewhere, sooner.

  • Amelia Diamond

    this made me laugh so hard erica

    • Hayley

      My favorite line: “(tomayto, tomahto; Levi-OH-sah, Levi-oh-SAR)”

  • Catalina

    Android had all these features before Apple (just sayin’)!

    • 808kate

      Yeah seriously and Androids were already waterproof like 6 years ago. I dropped mine in the ocean and it was totally fine. Versus the other day my friend got like 1 drop of water on her iPhone 6 and it’s dead now. Next thing iPhone is gonna come out with their own version of Swype keyboard and everyone’s gonna lose it

  • kay

    “did 7 eat 9” i am dyyyyiiinnngggg

  • Yeah, I think the facial recognition is creepy as hell, but I’m kind of a freak about privacy. I never turned on the thumbprint access either. And I want my headphone jack. I used to upgrade every time before they removed it. Now I’m just hanging onto my 6 until something comes out that seems like an improvement. Meh.

    Darling Marcelle

  • Anne Dyer

    7 ate 9… YES. Bahahaha. Favorite childhood joke.

  • ErinPaige

    This is one of those brilliant articles where I ask myself “why the hell have I clicked on this?” at the beginning, and then at the end, having cried tears of laughter, re-read 80% out loud to my also now laughing man-friend, I am sad that there isn’t more. So good Erica!

  • Regarding the “best screen on any phone ever”, I feel like everyone has kind of glazed over the fact that Samsung is the one providing Apple with the OLED screens…so…..taking credit for something that’s not theirs? Animojis were creepy. I think people who have a 7 are probably okay for another year.

  • surprise! this was absolutely hilarious

  • nice fun article…..

    good read…..

  • Emmie

    thank you for pronunciations

  • belle

    I am suuuuuper not cool with the facial recognition, and will probably leave Apple once I no longer have the option for a phone without facial scanning. Like, what are my legal rights there? Is all that biometric data protected? It’s not that easy to copy a fingerprint, but someone could easily get a super high res photo of my face without me ever knowing, and then what? What if you’re an identical twin – no more privacy? I am already creeped out by the potential security/privacy risks with the current iPhone, not to mention I can’t get any headphones to work with it other than the proprietary Apple earbuds.

    • Lola

      They analyze your face muscles.. A picture of you won’t be able to unlock the phone

      • belle

        I don’t trust it. Even Touch ID isn’t totally secure. Facial ID doesn’t analyze your muscles, it analyzes a 3D depth map of your face. Technology like 3D scanning, projection mapping and 3D printing are pretty mainstream these days. You can create a 3D model from an image, especially if you have a bank of images to pull from- for example, an Instagram profile full of close up selfies.) The more public you are, the more photos are out there, and the more likely someone might want to access your information (recall the celebrity nude leaks..) Not to mention the people closest genetically to you are the ones most likely to be able to access your phone. I suppose you always run the risk of someone picking up a fingerprint, but that takes way more effort than pulling together photos. As more and more personal information is stored on my phone, the more secure I want my phone to be.

        In other words, hello Samsung

    • sally

      Apple is one of the only big companies that gives a shit about privacy — google, fb and amazon are selling your personal info EVERY DAY for profit but Tim Cook has made sure Apple does nothing like that. I don’t think the facial recognition info will go anywhere outside your phone.

      • belle

        I mean, that’s only if you take their whole differential privacy thing to mean the same thing as actual privacy. They are definitely storing and using your information, but they are good at marketing their research into new ways of transporting, storing and analyzing data rather than just making it anonymous (historically, that’s easy to undo). And I’m pretty sure the whole differential privacy tactic is not enacted for anything before iOS 10, so unless you’re using that you’re in the same boat as everyone else.

        Also, let’s be real, Apple just makes enough profit from hardware that they can afford to market themselves as being above data mining and depending on advertising in the same way that Google, Facebook, and Amazon do. When compared to them it might be the lesser of two evils, but that’s a pretty low bar to begin with.


  • Shannon

    I got an iPhone 7 in July, anticipating that I was going to hate/not care about all the updates that Apple offered. Lo and behold… yup, I was right.

  • Paola GP

    These are literally the only important questions! Who cares about processors or megapixels!?

  • sweetlooweeze

    Sounds like a lot of stuff to get used to

  • Merrynell

    LOL I read X as EX up until the end of the article even after you said it’s “ten” and LOL at “new iPhone 8 (pronounced “eight”) and a larger 8 Plus (“eight-pluhss”)” lololol

    LOLing at the whole thing! I forgot what we’re talking about…oh, thoughts on the new iPhone! Hmm…

  • Emily

    This is such a good article. Personally I like my home button too much to go straight to a 10… or an X, should I say. I could see getting an 8 though!

  • chouette

    They also skipped 2 if you go back in iPhone history so basically every iPhone since the 3G has been a lie. It’s like working on the “14th” floor… you know that’s the actual 13th floor, why you trying to taunt luck like that?

  • Ri Ha

    If someone holds up a photograph of you, will facial recognition recognize it??????????!?!!????

  • summerforever

    my boyfriend sent me this hilarious parody on reddit of the new iphone X… very spot on and also includes a harry potter reference: https://www.reddit.com/r/videos/comments/6zr2n2/iphone_x_parody/?st=J7J4PLWH&sh=9fd853e3