Apple marketing chief snubs Android Face ID efforts – ‘they all stink’

Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing has slammed Android efforts to replicate a Face ID system.

Back in September, Apple debuted the iPhone X to the world. A new flagship phone that celebrated 10 years of iPhone, the iPhone X was chock full of features – and came with a hefty £999 price tag to boot. One headline feature was Face ID, a new facial recognition system that allows users to unlock their phone without having to enter a PIN or password.

Since the handset’s November retail launch, the feature has generally gone down well – aside from a few concerns over the fooling potential of identical twins. It’s thought that this general uptick in positivity about such a feature means more Android handsets will try to replicate it in the new year.

But Phil Schiller, who heads up Apple’s marketing efforts, says that Android alternatives to Face ID “all stink” right now.

“They don’t work in all the ways we need Face ID to work,” explains Schiller, speaking to Dutch site Bright. “We’re very aware that through the years the simple thing, this Home button, that started as the way you click to get to the Home screen, grew into doing so many things for us. We added Touch ID, it took you to the multitasking screen, paged Siri, activated Apple Pay. All through this one mechanical button.”

He went on: “So for Face ID we needed the best way we know of to enable us to easily unlock our device with our face, in a protected way with the Secure Enclave, and support all these other things. We had to solve all of that.”

“Other things that people have tried with face haven’t been anything like that,” Schiller added. “Face ID is a very unique implementation.”

There are alternatives to Apple’s Face ID out there, of course. Samsung famously debuted Iris Recognition on the Samsung Galaxy Note series, to generally positive critical reception. And OnePlus recently launched its own Face ID rival on the new OnePlus 5T, which only launched just last month.

It’s expected that 2018 will bring many more flagship phones touting such features, but it remains to be seen whether Schiller will be surprised by the quality of them or not.

Related: iPhone 9 release date

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