Why the FaceID Fail on Stage Wasn’t a FaceID Fail at All

I’m pretty sure everyone watching gringed slightly when Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, said the words, “Now, unlocking it is as easy as looking at it and swiping up,” followed by a pause and, “…you know, let’s try that again…” and still nothing.

For all the talk right before this live demo of how Face ID would be seamless and work instantly, is amazing, etc., it sure wasn’t in that moment.

Federighi gets a tad visibly shaken at this point and goes to a backup device that ends up working just fine.

The. Internet. Died.

Some going as far as to show the drop in Apple’s share price saying that it was related (I don’t know enough about stocks to know if that’s true or not, but seems there’s a lot of reasons why Apple’s stock could have dropped slightly besides just that).

Vice News Fail

The thing is, the issue wasn’t FaceID’s fault at all.

If you look closely at the iPhone X’s screen in the background when he is trying to use it, TouchID users will see a very familiar message.


“Your passcode is required to enable Face ID”. This is the same message that happens whenever you restart your iPhone and try and use TouchID. It requires that you enter your pin in first, then afterwards you can use TouchID/FaceID until you reboot the phone again and it requires it again.

FaceID didn’t mess up, technically it wasn’t even on yet.

Now, this isn’t some defense that FaceID will be amazing–I’m really curious on testing it myself against other solutions–but I definitely think the fact that FaceID failed here needs to be clarified (and Mr. Federighi probably deserves a break).

Now whoever didn’t put in that pin before the demo started to get FaceID to turn on in the first place, though…

Did anyone else notice this? What do you think of this entire thing? Also, click the source link and scroll to about 96 mins into the presentation to check it out for yourself.

EDIT: Some people have pointed out that it might not be from a restart but from a wrong input.

The truth is that there are SO many variables. Maybe someone before it went on stage entered in a pin or looked at the phone and locked it down before setting it on the podium, for example?

The point of this isn’t to defend Apple and this product which I plan to thoroughly test when it comes out, of course. The point is that we are too quick to point out a “failure” in a feature simply because it’s from a company “doing well” (the Germans call it schadenfreude), but the truth is I personally, think it was a fail–just not necessarily a Face ID one.

EDIT 2: And we have a response saying it was from other people’s faces off-stage – https://www.engadget.com/amp/2017/09/14/apple-explains-face-id-fail/

Source: Apple
Related Items: , , ,

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.