Some people are concerned that replacing Touch ID with Face ID is a design compromise. While I rarely give Apple the benefit of the doubt when they scrap an existing standard, like the headphone jack, this new Face ID skepticism seems premature. John Gruber writes:
There is clearly skepticism out there about Face ID. Some people think Face ID is going to suck, and a lot of people are flat-out assuming that they’re going to miss Touch ID. We saw the same thing with Touch ID when it was announced, and the skeptics were very wrong. I haven’t used it personally, but I am pretty sure already that the skeptics are going to be wrong about Face ID too.
With Touch ID, there are some obvious limitations that we just accept. For example, of course Touch ID doesn’t work with gloves on. How could it? But with Face ID, the technology is so advanced that we have no basis for judging when it should or shouldn’t work, so I think we’re going to expect it to work all the time.
For Face ID to be successful it has to be delightful, like a magic trick. The threat to magic is inconsistency. One glitch and the illusion is ruined forever, and you never believe in it again.
I’m not worried about Face ID. I’m not even worried about the notch, which is a compromise. Apple seems very confident in both Face ID and the iPhone X. Not confidence from hubris. Not feigned confidence, justified as courage. They actually believe they’ve got a winner, and so do I.