In the aftermath of the iPhone X unveiling, a lot of confusion and discontent among app developers was on display. The iPhone X, unlike any of the iPhone model Apple has introduced, comes with an edge-to-edge display. This in itself would have required developers to make small tweaks to cater to iPhone X customers, but then there is the infamous notch as well. Apple has now confirmed how it wants developers to tackle the problem: embrace the notch.
Apple has published the guidelines for how apps need to interact with the iPhone X's near bezel-less display. The company has instructed developers to ensure that they make adjustments so that the notch doesn't interfere with the layout of their apps. This is the first time iOS app developers will have to make any such adjustments.
Developers are not new to the idea of tweaking their apps for different iPhone models. When the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were introduced, for instance, they had to ensure that the app, which until that time was built for the 4-inch iPhone models, would naturally embrace the taller, higher resolution display. But the constraints for how an app should function on an iPhone model has never been this challenging.
new iphone format: 16:9:notch pic.twitter.com/3c2Vqgnf54— ⚡️ Owen Williams (@ow) September 12, 2017
Think about it. There are two ways an app -- let's say a video app, for argument's sake -- could render on the new iPhone X. One way is the video makes use of the entire display, and gets some part of it cut because of the notch. The other way is drawing lines and ensuring that the video display doesn't get past the notch. There's another new challenge for app developers. The corners of the iPhone X's display are rounded, a departure from previous models that followed a rectangular outline.
"Avoid explicitly placing interactive controls at the very bottom of the screen and in corners. People use swipe gestures at the bottom edge of the display to access the Home screen and app switcher, and these gestures may cancel custom gestures you implement in this area. The far corners of the screen can be difficult areas for people to reach comfortably," Apple wrote, steering clear how it wants things to be done.