How Apple's New Animoji Works -- but only on the iPhone X.


If you've seen the dozens of new commercials pushing the new iPhones, you've undoubtedly seen its new animoji feature. For those of you who don't know it's when you pick and emoji and aim your forward facing camera on the iPhone towards yourself and record a message. The animoji then mimics your facial expressions and mouth as you talk, enabling you to send an animated emoji (hence animoji) to someone. 

What most people don't realize, however, is that the animojis only work with the iPhone X. So, anyone who buys a version of the 8, might be slightly disappointed. 

The reason it only works with the new iPhone X is the same reason the iPhone X uses facial recognition to unlock your phone. It has to do with the new forward facing IR camera on the iPhone X.

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Now, the phone needs both the RGB and the IR camera to work properly, that's why the animoji is not available on the iPhone 8 or backward compatible with any iPhone. For face ID to work, Apple had to put so much hardware at the top of the iPhone X it created the much-maligned "notch" at the top. But in that notch at the top of the display is the area that creates what Apple called the "TrueDepth camera system", which is comprised of a flood illuminator, infrared camera, front camera, dot projector, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, a speaker, and microphone. When you glance at your iPhone X, a motion sensor goes off waking up the TrueDepth camera system.

All of this happens in real time. Animoji uses the TrueDepth camera system used for Face ID as well as the A11 Bionic chip to capture and analyze more upwards of 50 different muscle movements in your face.

It then mirrors your expressions in an animated form. Giving you fun ways to tell people you love or hate them... depending on where you are in life. 


Source: 9to5mac