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How the iPhone X Could be About to Up Your Selfie Game

Picture of Peter Ward
Peter Ward
Tech Editor
Updated: 15 September 2017

The new iPhone X has attracted a lot of attention for its facial recognition technology, high price, and a slick new design. But the phone also boasts some features that promise to take your selfies to the next level.

Apple has upgraded the software of the iPhone X to make the cameras even more powerful, and easy to master, than previous devices. The selfie-obsessed will be delighted to know they can now use the ‘portrait mode’ of shooting with the front facing camera. Portrait mode has been available on previous models, but never for the camera that faces the user.

The portrait mode blurs the background of the photo, putting all the spotlight on your own face. That may seem daunting to some, but Apple’s latest phone also features “portrait lighting” which uses the multi-focus capabilities of the camera and AI to examine your face and light it in different ways.

The Portrait Mode on the new iPhone | Courtesy Apple

The Portrait Mode on the new iPhone | Courtesy Apple

When you take a selfie, you can now create effects such as natural light, contour light, and stage light. “You compose a photo, the dual cameras and the ISP sense the scene, they create a depth map, and they actually change the lighting contours over the face,” Apple’s Phil Schiller said during the event unveiling the new phone. “These aren’t filters, this is real time analysis.”

A photo from the iPhone X front camera | Courtesy Apple

A photo from the iPhone X front camera | Courtesy Apple

To raise the selfie stakes further, Apple also introduced ‘animojis’ a way to animate emojis to make their facial gestures copy your own. The technology allows you to send talking, smiling, grimacing, gurning animal emojis to your friends, utilizing the depth of field technology in the new cameras.

Craig Federighi, Senior Vice President of software engineering, said: “You’re using emoji to talk to friends, and maybe they represent how you feel, so you might as well animate them in your likeness. They’re so fun, you’ll want to share them.”

One of the new animojis for the iPhone | Courtesy Apple

One of the new animojis for the iPhone | Courtesy Apple