What it is: Apple’s iPhone X eliminated the Home button and Touch ID fingerprint recognition.
When Samsung released the Galaxy S8, they put the fingerprint scanner on the back. They reportedly tried to put the fingerprint scanner on the front but technical difficulties prevented them from doing that. So when Apple released the iPhone X, people wondered that if the Home button was going away, how would Apple deal with the fingerprint recognition sensor?
There answer is simple. They got rid of it and replaced it with something better: Face ID. According to Apple, Touch ID had a 1 in 50,000 chance of being fooled but Face ID has a 1 in a million chance of being fooled. So rather than place the fingerprint recognition sensor on the back like Samsung did, or deal with trying to get it to work on the front of the screen, Apple just got rid of it and put Face ID in its place.
That means Touch ID, which was just introduced four years ago, will be on its way out with Face ID replacing it on the iPhone. Touch ID may linger longer on the iPad but expect Face ID to move to the iPad as well.
The reason for switching to Face ID from Touch ID is to improve security. Now that Apple has shifted to facial recognition, Android rivals will likely follow suit. Initially, Android device makers had trouble getting an accurate fingerprint sensor so now it’s time to see how well they can create an accurate facial recognition sensor.
Apple pointed out that they tested Face ID security by trying to spoof it using photographic and even three-dimensional masks of someone’s face. Face ID is superior to Touch ID so it’s time to say good-bye to fingerprint recognition for good.
Touch ID was good but Apple has no problems moving forward and abandoning good enough technology for great technology. At one time, Apple tried to use the scroll wheel interface for the iPhone since so many people were familiar with it throughout the iPod. However, once Apple perfected the touch screen interface, there was no need for the scroll wheel interface any more. Today, many people have completely forgotten that the scroll wheel interface ever existed.
Touch ID is following the scroll wheel interface into obscurity. One day people will laugh at the idea of using fingerprints to authenticate a user when Face ID is so much faster and more secure. Then when Apple moves beyond Face ID, the whole cycle of change will start all over again.