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Optimizing Apps for iPhone X is Crucial. Learn Why!

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Remember watching panoramic movies on an old 4:3 TV? Did you like the big black bars on the top and bottom of the display? Sure you didn’t – unless you’re a fan of wasted space. Imagine that dozens of millions iPhone X users are in the similar situation right now. And that’s why you should ensure, that your app works properly on Apple’s newest device.

iPhone X is here and it sells like hotcakes. No wonder its results are stellar – it employs the most drastic design changes in the 10-year history of Apple smartphones. Of course, the bezel-less construction and OLED display play the first fiddle here. But even if the screen itself looks great, most of the iOS apps don’t fit in it properly and don’t make an equally good impression. That’s why optimizing your app for iPhone X should get a top spot on your to-do list.

“But iPhone X is only one, extremely pricey smartphone” – you might say. And you are right. For now. The Nikkei (the world’s largest financial newspaper) reports that Apple will show at least three new iPhones this year. And two of them will look nearly identical to iPhone X. Say goodbye to the bezels and a physical home button. You’re already living in a new mobile reality, so you should get on the bandwagon. Let me show you how.

What exactly can be broken and why should I fix it?

The iPhone X features an edge-to-edge screen with 19,5:9 aspect ratio. That’s a huge transition from 16:9 displays employed in Apple’s smartphones for many years. Moreover, the phone has a notch which covers the upper part of the display. Those two attributes can be problematic for current apps. For instance, sometimes the notch interferes with the app interface – a headline or menu may be hidden behind it. In even worse cases, the app displays itself in a tiny 16:9 window, creating ugly letterboxing effect. It may not sound like a big deal, but it really is – after all, you’ll notice it a second.

Optimizing Apps for iPhone X is Crucial. Learn Why!
I love buying stuff from this app, but those software bezels look awful, so I don’t use it on my iPhone X

No one wants to use an app that looks broken. Outdated design questions the whole credibility of the product. It’s no surprise then, that after iPhone X launched, the Internet buzzed with articles about how poor apps look. This topic was covered by many, from Mashable to PhoneArena. Even Google took a hit for delaying X-optimized versions of some apps, like Gmail, Maps, and Calendar: “Those apps make your $1,000 bezel-less iPhone X look like a $700 iPhone 8 with bezels”wrote Antonio Villas-Boas for Business Insider. On spot! Buying an expensive phone and not being able to make use of its best features make consumers mad.

Oh wow, I hope it’s not too late to optimize my app

It’s not too late indeed, but if you haven’t done it yet, it might be your last call. Things have changed since last November – as of now, almost all of leading developers have updated their apps to support the 19,5:9 display. The list includes Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, Pocket, Netflix, Instagram – all of the big guys. All of those apps use extra screen space to make users navigate through the interface conveniently. YouTube brings full-screen support, Facebook simply keeps the notch from getting in the way, and Netflix – yes, let’s talk about Netflix more.

Optimizing Apps for iPhone X is Crucial. Learn Why!
Hello indeed! iPhone X has set a new standard – other iPhones will follow it soon

I’m late to the party! What can I do to make it up?

You see, making the app work and look good on the iPhone X is only one part of the equation. This phone gives you multiple chances to impress your audience. Netflix for example, lets you watch movies and TV shows in beautiful HDR with a wide color gamut, which was not possible on any pre-8 iPhone generations. Clients will be more likely to choose your app with belief that it’s the best place to enjoy their favorite content.

Optimizing your app for the iPhone X will not only improve the UX but can also drive sales.

Same goes for 1password. This popular password manager added a support for TrueDepth sensors and FaceID recognition features, which means that people can now authorize logins and access private content with their face. Snapchat can boast of animoji-like filters exclusive to iPhone X, giving the users one more reason to stick to this app instead of trying another one.

Are there any additional benefits?

Of course! Optimizing your app for the iPhone X will not only improve the UX but can also drive sales. One of the most spectacular examples of iPhone X app optimization has to be Glasses by Warby Parker. It makes use of TrueDepth sensors to let people try on new glasses in augmented reality environment. And then buy them, of course. How cool is that? IKEA did the same thing with Place – thanks to this app, you can put natural-sized virtual furniture to your room and see how it fits before making an order.

This is how IKEA Place works:

And just one more thing, as Steve Jobs would’ve said: you know how did I found out about all of those great apps? I just stumbled upon many lists of best optimized iPhone X apps. The Internet is stuffed with them – it seems that a simple fact that your product runs well on Apple’s flagship can get you a free promotion.

Ok, I’m ready to future-proof my app

So it’s settled: making your app feel at home on the iPhone X can do a lot of good. And it’s definitely worth doing – especially that later this year it won’t be about the iPhone X anymore. It will be about almost all of the new iPhones. Think about over 200 million users (that’s how many iPhones are sold every year) looking for great apps to pack on their new favorite toy! The possibilities are endless. Employing iPhone X-specific features is now essential for future-proofing your product and getting the wider audience. Or maybe I should say present-proofing? The future is now, with iPhone X as a forerunner.

Share Your Thoughts!

What are your favorite iPhone X features and which features exclusive to Apple’s flagships would you like to be implemented in your app? We’d love to know, so please share your thoughts in the comment section! And if you want your app to be properly optimized for the iPhone X, feel free to contact us – at 10Clouds, we know everything about mobile software development!

Michał Pisarski

Experienced Tech Writer

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