The face scan feature is a big draw for the iPhone X, but its uses go beyond unlocking your phone. Meet Animojis, which breathes life into emojis using your voice and facial expressions.
Animojis use the iPhone X’s FaceID technology to scan 50 of your facial muscles and analyze your facial expressions. These animated talking characters can be sent to anyone with an iOS device or smartphone, Apple says.
The feature seems simple enough to use. They’re found in the Messages app in the same place you access the stickers, games, and apps on your texting keyboard. The Animoji tab is marked with a monkey, where you can choose from 12 characters. After making your selection, look at your iPhone to line up your face with the Animoji frame and press the red button to record a video that’s up to 10 seconds long. You can preview your creation before sending it using the replay button, or use the same recording with a different Animoji by just selecting another character. Then, send your talking monkey or unicorn to your friends using the upwards arrow.
Additionally, you can use your Animoji to decorate messages with static stickers. It’s done the same way as sending a video, except instead of pressing the record button, touch and hold the character to grab it and drag it up to the message. It’s then automatically sent. If there’s an Animoji you especially like, you can save it to your iPhone by pressing on the character in your messages and swiping up, which will make a “save” option appear.
This feature could potentially also be a development in voicemails that are more personalized and engaging, an article from The Verge says.
Don’t forget that features making Animojis possible, the Face ID system and TrueDepth camera, has already faced criticism related to privacy issues and security concerns. Fans of Black Mirror have noted how the show — as it often does — predicted the future existence of these Animojis in an episode that featured a cartoon bear named Waldo that took on a life of its own and successfully ran for office.