Factors to Consider While Designing Apps for iPhone X


It was on September 12, only a month ago that Apple had announced a series of highly advanced and innovative gadgets that really startled the entire world. These futuristic devices included iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, a smart iOS watch, 4K Apple TV and new Operating System iOS 11 to name a few in the list.

Apple has broken away the shackles with the introduction of the iPhone X as it does not coincide with the features of conventional smartphones whether it is the outer appearance or the enchanting design. The rectangular shape has also gone and it has been substituted with round corners and edge-to edge display etc. that instantly arrests the attention. Not only that the traditional home screen has also been replaced by virtual home indicator.

The size of the screen has also grown much larger and it has been equipped with the Super Retina Display, Face ID authentication, swift processing as well as wireless charging.

But the vital question that props up is how will be the apps that will remain installed in the iPhone X and most importantly how the iOS developers would develop the apps of this ultra-modern phone. Although the phone will be made available from November 12 onwards, still we can focus on the essential aspects of designing the app for iPhone X.

More Vertical Space to Work With

As it has been said earlier that iPhone X is blessed to have large screen with at least 20% more vertical space. It also has a higher resolution that will create an impact on the design. The developers will get the freedom to design edge-to-edge content. Moreover, the entire iPhone comprises of glass, which provides the opportunity to maximize the space utility. The presence of the Human Interface guidelines allows the use of white spaces and margins.

iPhone x screen size

As such the developers should necessarily pay attention on the layouts, ensuring that they fill the screen. While doing so, it must be kept in mind that they the round edges of the phone does not overshadow the content during the screen access.

The Layout Design for iPhone X

It is important to understand the importance of the layout design or interface design for the iPhone X. The developer should aim at offering the maximum benefits to the end user by offering a full screen experience. Primarily, the apps would fully support the new iPhone X if it is using the Auto Layout and is properly developed with respect to safe area and margin.

iPhone X layout

Things taken into account for layout design

  • The position of the content is very crucial and it should be placed in the center and should be symmetrical. The important aspect is support for the portrait as well as landscape and to avoid the clipping of the corners and sensor of the device.
  • Remember that the new iPhone X will have a tall status bar in comparison to other iPhone models and the content should be placed dynamically.
  • Don’t obscure the status bar in the app as it provides handy information to the users. It must be only hidden to add more value.
  • While designing the User Interface (UI), please pay attention to the interface provided by the system and auto layout.
  • It won’t be a good idea to use the black neither at the top nor at the bottom of the screen filled in device’s rounded corners, home indicator, sensor housing.
  • It is better not to add the interactive control keys at the bottom because most of the users tend to swipe the gestures at the bottom only. By doing so the custom gestures may get cancelled that you have added.

Read also: Importance of UI/UX Design in Mobile App Development

Keeping an Eye on the High Resolution

The iPhone X has been stuffed with superb high resolution display that can pose a challenge for the app developers. The figures suggest that it has a dimension of about 1125×2436 pixels and scalable factor of about 3x.

Now comes the challenging part as the app which needs to be created has to be resolution free such as the PDF’s and other vector artworks. As for the rasterized artwork, they also have to incorporate both 3x and 2x versions.

Some Important Guidelines to Follow

  • If you want to make content the king, then please ensure that you are using 8 px by 8 px grid so that the lines become sharper and this becomes applicable to all sizes.
  • For the images, the PNG file format must be used in case of intricate artwork and for the photos, the JPG file format is considered best. You can even make the artwork sharper and highlighting the texture.
  • The choice of 8-bit color palette would be recommended best as far as the PNG graphics is concerned.
  • Try to strike a perfect balance between the size and the quality while optimizing the JPEG files. In order to find an ideal size for each of the photos, the best thing would be to go for the compression settings.
  • For the glyphs the PDF is rendered suitable and it needs high resolution scaling.

Do not opt for the Duplication of the System keyboard

The iPhone app developers should always remember the fact that it is best not to implement the duplication of the system keyboard that includes the panel with Emoji found at the bottom of the customized keyboard. And please give preference to the Face ID instead of Touch ID in case of authentication.

face ID

Now since the Face ID has been added as a newly advanced feature in the iPhone X, you need to give emphasis on the apps that add more value to this special feature. So, the apps that you design, specifically those related to payments or purchases should necessarily have a quick sign-in process so that the user can maximize its benefit.

Designing the 3D Touch Interaction

Amidst the various surprising features that iPhone X offers one is surely the 3D touch interaction that offers a new dimension. The users get additional access to the functions wherein they have to employ different types of pressure. The apps display a set of menu as well as also play an animation.

iPhone X 3D touch

The pressure on the app icons allows it to rapidly perform a set of tasks that needs to be carried out. For instance, the Camera icon lets you take selfies, record videos and also take snaps in a slow or normal motion.

Emphasize on these Points While Designing

  • Developing the fast action apps (precisely four in number) is important so that it can carry out the tasks rapidly. However, there is an exception in this case as it should not be used for notifications or easy navigations.
  • Substituting an emoji in place of icon is a bad idea; so avoid it.
  • The titles should be easy to comprehend.

Read also: Top Mobile App Design Trends That Designers Should Consider

The Design of the Font

With the unveiling of the iPhone X, Apple also introduced a new font which is known as the San Francisco, which is a default font. However, in case of Apple Watches, the font used is San Francisco Compact. Both are same but their design is different.

According to Apple, it is ideal to make use of the SF Pro Text for which the size is 19 or smaller and SF Pro Display, the size being 20 or more. The OS can automatically adjust the size of the font in case the developer is using the San Francisco.

The Designing of Color

It is one of the most colorful and vibrant feature that gives iPhone X the upper edge. With the initiation of the new color management, the developer gets the freedom to go for appropriate color changes accordingly on the screen. The biggest advantage is that the users are able to differentiate the various colors that has been added without getting biased.

And if it is not the end then you also have a six-channel light sensor which helps in the white and black balance and measure the temperature of the color thereby adopting to the surroundings and lighting conditions. This indeed brings a fine visual on the paper.

The Facility of App Preview

Since the app developer is venturing into the new zone, therefore he would love to get the little support or help in this regard. Apple is kind enough to provide that helping hand where the developer has the facility to preview the app with the assistance of Xcode.

This can actually save a lot of time and you can also identify the various problems that lies in during the designing process. You can also make corrections regarding any imperfections. Thus, it is a vital asset.

Checkout Our Infographic: Top 12 App Designing Tips and Tricks for the iPhone X


The development of applications for the new iPhone X is going to be a tough and challenging ask for the app developers out there. As such there is no such major change in the designing procedure with only a few changes here and there.

But whatever be the condition, the fact is that it has offered extensive opportunities to the developers who are willing to explore in this new arena. He gets to learn something exciting and add a new feather in the book.

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Written by Manoj Rajput

Manoj Rajput is an UI/UX & Graphic designer with over 6 years of experience in the design world helping businesses promote themselves effectively. Requirement Understand, Creating Wireframes for Website and Mobile apps, Ui Designing for Website and Mobile apps, Final Design mock ups Designing for Website and Mobile apps.