Doubts and Speculation Surround Apple's Onstage Face ID 'Fail' During iPhone X Keynote [Updated]

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Sep 13, 2017.

  1. RCS31 Suspended


    Jun 28, 2013
    Looking for a place of freedom and rationality
    That is just stupid and not true. If that was the case they wouldn't use the "real" one to begin with
  2. bsimpsen macrumors member

    Sep 18, 2012
    All of those can be removed or moved out of the way without taking off your gloves. And Face ID will work with a partially obscured face, though sunglasses might have to be re/moved. All of this is better than taking off my gloves.
  3. johnnygee macrumors regular


    Nov 14, 2013
    I think we've heard the "it don't work yada yada" song and dance before from the naysayers when touch ID was introduced.
  4. jm001 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 19, 2011
    Some observers have leapt on the moment as evidence that Face ID is unreliable or a yet-to-be-perfected technology that's unfit to replace Touch ID fingerprint authentication. Vice News even went so far as to link the onstage incident to a sudden drop in Apple's share price. Since the demo aired, however, several competing theories have been put forward to explain the apparent "failure".

    Seriously? (or Siri-ously?) Out of all the great stuff that was showcased, THAT one slight fail (it did work thereafter) caught people's attention? I guess if you're waiting for ANY opportunity to pounce... The taunts and negative comments about this feature or even about the phone remind me of those children in the playground who are so jealous of the popular kid that they wait for any stumble and run with it. I've had numerous occasions when Touch ID has failed on me especially when trying to use Apple Pay at a terminal or trying to unlock my phone, yet I'm happy with Touch ID. I'm happy because for the majority of the time it simply works. As for the Face ID, Federighi demonstrated TWICE that it does simply work.
  5. aylk macrumors regular


    Jan 29, 2010
    He is also announcing his actions as this happens, so it will be very easy to see...

    First try at 3:26, second try with lock screen at 3:29. When he realizes he's locked out of the phone he picks up a back-up phone, wipes his face, and tries a third time, this time successfully.

    It's ok, there is no need to defend Apple design choices. They don't care about what you think especially if you end up buying their stuff anyway.
  6. Technarchy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2012
    That’s not the behavior of a failed biometric entry in iOS 11. What part of that is not registering?

    That’s the behavior of an iPhone that has been recently turned on.

    Lets try it this way, pick up the nearest iOS device and fail biometrics on purpose. Post a screen shot and compare it to what Craig experiences.
  7. sql-gt macrumors newbie


    Sep 13, 2017
    Mmm... two unsuccessful attemps... I'm going to stare all iphones X just to mess up their unlocking system :)
  8. EmperorTim macrumors newbie


    Oct 2, 2015
    Perth, Australia
    How many more times are we going to see people misquote this? It's not an error rate figure, it's a figure on the chances of someone else walking up to your phone, trying to authenticate and successfully getting in even if they aren't registered.
  9. aylk macrumors regular


    Jan 29, 2010
    Did you try this yourself?

    After restart:

    Biometrics fail:

    It wouldn't let me take a screenshot after restart.
  10. amolediphone, Sep 13, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017

    amolediphone Suspended

    Sep 9, 2017
    I was joking to myself in my head when I thought "nahh, surely no one is naive enough or critical enough to take them to task, it's clearly an error, something which happens to all technology a bazillion times a day... "

    Then I stepped back and realised that this is the internet age, and drama is the dish of the day, no matter how tiny and irrelevant the cause of the TOTAL non-issue, there's always the critical, cynical, obsessive predatory morons who feel psychotically compelled to generate drama...

    Yep, the tedious, predictable, blindly hive-minded masses never let you down.

    I didn't want to insult your intelligence, but since the evidence dictates there isn't much when non-news like this is posted, I'm sad to have to do so... it's new, unreleased hardware on an unreleased OS. Duuuuh.

    Sorry to interrupt drama class - please, resume where you left off, kiddies. I expect nothing more than the scrapings of the barrel from this site.
  11. rafark macrumors 6502a


    Sep 1, 2017
    The 10 yo kids have arrived. Learn to know what a backup is in the first place.
  12. amolediphone, Sep 13, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017

    amolediphone Suspended

    Sep 9, 2017
    This site is dominated by pot shot wild guesses from adolescent know it alls, your expectations may be somewhat high if you expect any sense from majority of MR.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 13, 2017 ---
    You need more likes, but sadly the temptation to rise to drama will prevail for the general internet populus. I significantly lower my expectations with respect to people's demonstrated intelligence by way of looking at their kneejerk (let's just stick with the jerk part) reaction that causes them to post highly predictable reactions to "news" by way of comments online, I've found ODD instances that contradict and prove this to be unwarranted cynicism, but they're extremely rare.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 13, 2017 ---
    Confirmation bias - Google it, adjust your intelligence accordingly.
  13. KmanOz macrumors regular


    Oct 27, 2007
    Dude Apple created TouchID and everyone freaked out saying it was an invasion of privacy, too slow blah blah. The reality is every other phone manufacturer copied them and it's a standard feature now. That was a while ago and they are changing the ball game again. People say Apple don't innovate yet when they are doing it in your face everyone complains. I guarantee you FaceID will be something all other phone companies will have as a feature in the future.

    The only real disappointment for me was Qi charging. I honestly thought Apple would have done something better. They could of added Qi years ago but I thought they were trying to perfect a better system.
  14. falainber macrumors 6502a


    Mar 16, 2016
    Wild West
    It looks like Apple managed to kill two birds with one stone:
    * they provided a demo of their great new technology
    * they also provided a solution for dealing with the problems in their new phone - always carry two phones with you, at least one should work.
  15. Technarchy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2012
    Notice you did show a rather significant visual indicator for a failed biometric attempt.

    Clue attached.

    Attached Files:

  16. Nick05 macrumors member


    Aug 5, 2011
    Orlando, FL
    I get the "Your passcode is required to enable Touch ID" message randomly. It isn't after 48 hours and it isn't after too many attempts. For example, I may wake up in the morning and pick up my phone and it asks for it even though I had just used it before going to sleep. It has happened after just an hour or so as well. It isn't often, but probably once every week or two it asks me for the passcode. Phone wasn't restarted, didn't fail authentication, and wasn't more than 8 hours.
  17. rturner2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2009
    While I agree it will be interesting to see Face ID vs Touch ID... the trade off of the phone being all screen is probably worth it.
  18. amolediphone, Sep 13, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017

    amolediphone Suspended

    Sep 9, 2017
    Apple don't rush - fools rush in head first without thinking (plenty of foolish Android OEMs making phones with "features" that are never used, as they are terribly thought out (if at all) and hence the execution leaves EVERYTHING to be desired.) There is always logic and clear, pragmatic rationale to Apple's hardware design decisions, no matter whether people miss it entirely (the majority do, even the self-professed "experts"), or pick up on it instinctively, first time.

    The general public - (including MR, which is the general public to a greater or lesser degree) - miss almost all of, or the ENTIRE point of extremely subtle and complex, pivotal, undocumented design decisions with companies like Apple, which in and of itself screams LOUD why there are very few companies who are like Apple and meet the same levels of deeply considered and carefully rationalised, repeatedly iterated and refined prototypes.

    What astounds me, year after year in the Apple world is how the majority of people are too lazy (or maybe their brains don't have this area of ability switched on) to use some BASIC critical thought processes (due to the majority of the consumption-driven public having minor experience {being generous here, best case scenario!} or entirely absent knowledge of industrial design, machining of materials, electronics prototyping and testing/certification procedures, and then the incredible balancing act of getting all these systems and components to work seamlessly (within reason) - does this surprise ANYONE when the average level of intellect put into the average (ALWAYS critical) comment, is conspicuous by its GLARING absence?

    Criticism is the default, lazy, easy way out when it comes to opinions. Try harder to think, turn on those brains cells AND PUSH THEM HARD!
  19. Wanted797 macrumors 6502


    Oct 28, 2011
    I don't think it failed. Half way through reading this article I saw the message 'Your passcode is required to enable Face ID.'

    Which is the message you get if the phone hasn't been unlocked in 8 hours. That phone was probably stored away or at the presentation over night and Craig's the first one to touch it since the day previous, other set up staff also may have triggered the phone when setting it up with multiple failed attempts.

    It could also be because when he first picks up the phone he looks away, and the screen turns off. This might have also prompted the phone to ask for the passcode just in case.
  20. kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    Ah, I see the disconnect now.

    I and some others are not saying it failed to recognize him. We're saying it was already passcode locked before he picked it up, due to it trying to recognize someone else prior.

    Have we yet seen a picture of instant feedback for each failed Face Id attempt?

    It's missing the Restart text for that situation.

  21. briloronmacrumo macrumors 6502


    Jan 25, 2008
    "...Another theory put forward is that several unsuccessful attempts...". What is it with "put forward"? Am I the only one who wonders about current writing skills? Consider an alternative: "....Another suggested theory is several unsuccessful attempts..."
  22. Technarchy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2012
    I can live with that.
  23. groovyd macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2013
    If something like this happened when Steve demoed the first iPhone on stage I don't think Apple would be where it is today. Moments like that make or break personal impressions even if they are honest mishaps.
  24. Technarchy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2012
    The ridiculous price tag, no Touch ID, and horrendous notch are more likely to hurt the iPhone X than a demo mishap.

    Not really digging those new gestures either.
  25. amolediphone, Sep 13, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017

    amolediphone Suspended

    Sep 9, 2017
    The average man truly has NO IDEA of the amount of plasticine and string which hold together barely working Apple prototypes so that they function just well enough and long enough to demo, in time for Keynote. If you read more books and went offline more often, maybe you folks would educate yourselves... well, maybe.



    "It’s hard to overstate the gamble Jobs took when he decided to unveil the iPhone back in January 2007. Not only was he introducing a new kind of phone — something Apple had never made before — he was doing so with a prototype that barely worked. Even though the iPhone wouldn’t go on sale for another six months, he wanted the world to want one right then. In truth, the list of things that still needed to be done was enormous. A production line had yet to be set up. Only about a hundred iPhones even existed, all of them of varying quality. Some had noticeable gaps between the screen and the plastic edge; others had scuff marks on the screen. And the software that ran the phone was full of bugs.

    The iPhone could play a section of a song or a video, but it couldn’t play an entire clip reliably without crashing. It worked fine if you sent an e-mail and then surfed the Web. If you did those things in reverse, however, it might not. Hours of trial and error had helped the iPhone team develop what engineers called “the golden path,” a specific set of tasks, performed in a specific way and order, that made the phone look as if it worked.

    But even when Jobs stayed on the golden path, all manner of last-minute workarounds were required to make the iPhone functional. On announcement day, the software that ran Grignon’s radios still had bugs. So, too, did the software that managed the iPhone’s memory. And no one knew whether the extra electronics Jobs demanded the demo phones include would make these problems worse.

    Jobs wanted the demo phones he would use onstage to have their screens mirrored on the big screen behind him. To show a gadget on a big screen, most companies just point a video camera at it, but that was unacceptable to Jobs. The audience would see his finger on the iPhone screen, which would mar the look of his presentation. So he had Apple engineers spend weeks fitting extra circuit boards and video cables onto the backs of the iPhones he would have onstage. The video cables were then connected to the projector, so that when Jobs touched the iPhone’s calendar app icon, for example, his finger wouldn’t appear, but the image on the big screen would respond to his finger’s commands. The effect was magical. People in the audience felt as if they were holding an iPhone in their own hands. But making the setup work flawlessly, given the iPhone’s other major problems, seemed hard to justify at the time.

    The software in the iPhone’s Wi-Fi radio was so unstable that Grignon and his team had to extend the phones’ antennas by connecting them to wires running offstage so the wireless signal wouldn’t have to travel as far. And audience members had to be prevented from getting on the frequency being used. “Even if the base station’s ID was hidden” — that is, not showing up when laptops scanned for Wi-Fi signals — “you had 5,000 nerds in the audience,” Grignon says. “They would have figured out how to hack into the signal.” The solution, he says, was to tweak the AirPort software so that it seemed to be operating in Japan instead of the United States. Japanese Wi-Fi uses some frequencies that are not permitted in the U.S.

    There was less they could do to make sure the phone calls Jobs planned to make from the stage went through. Grignon and his team could only ensure a good signal, and then pray. They had AT&T, the iPhone’s wireless carrier, bring in a portable cell tower, so they knew reception would be strong. Then, with Jobs’s approval, they preprogrammed the phone’s display to always show five bars of signal strength regardless of its true strength. The chances of the radio’s crashing during the few minutes that Jobs would use it to make a call were small, but the chances of its crashing at some point during the 90-minute presentation were high. “If the radio crashed and restarted, as we suspected it might, we didn’t want people in the audience to see that,” Grignon says. “So we just hard-coded it to always show five bars.”

    None of these kludges fixed the iPhone’s biggest problem: it often ran out of memory and had to be restarted if made to do more than a handful of tasks at a time. Jobs had a number of demo units onstage with him to manage this problem. If memory ran low on one, he would switch to another while the first was restarted. But given how many demos Jobs planned, Grignon worried that there were far too many potential points of failure. If disaster didn’t strike during one of the dozen demos, it was sure to happen during the grand finale, when Jobs planned to show all the iPhone’s top features operating at the same time on the same phone. He’d play some music, take a call, put it on hold and take another call, find and e-mail a photo to the second caller, look up something on the Internet for the first caller and then return to his music. “Me and my guys were all so nervous about this,” Grignon says. “We only had 128 megabytes of memory in those phones” — maybe the equivalent of two dozen large digital photographs — “and because they weren’t finished, all these apps were still big and bloated.

    Jobs rarely backed himself into corners like this. He was well known as a taskmaster, seeming to know just how hard he could push his staff so that it delivered the impossible. But he always had a backup, a Plan B, that he could go to if his timetable was off."

    Sorry to shatter your fragile delusions of "perfection" but this is real life.

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