While smartphone manufacturers as diverse as Apple, Xiaomi, Essential, Samsung, LG and soon enough Huawei are collectively inching closer to the bezelless dream, a number of challenges still need to be overcome before we can own truly “all-screen” mobile devices.

The aforementioned OEMs have tried a variety of solutions to existing design problems preventing the total annihilation of display borders, including fingerprint reader and even front camera relocation, under-glass biometric sensor integration and, worst of all, cutouts.

Yes, both the iPhone X and Essential Phone make do without a chunk of screen real estate at the top of their front panels, which doesn’t look pretty by any standard. But if for some reason this becomes the new high-end smartphone construction trend, maybe think twice before splashing the cash on those two simply to jump on the “notch” bandwagon.

There’s a much easier, cheaper way of turning any old Android handset into an iPhone X lookalike. It’s actually free of charge, and you can download it from Google’s Play Store under the XOutOf10 or Smartphone upgrader 2017 names.

You’re dealing with two different apps here capable of doing the same main thing – black out part of your user interface to simulate the iPhone X notch. Damian Piwowarski’s “Smartphone upgrader” goes a step further in offering an Essential Phone option for those that “prefer Android” all the way, as well as adding rounded corners to devices running 5.0 Lollipop and later.

Clearly, the two apps serve no practical purpose, but if you’re at a loss of words when it comes to mocking prospective iPhone X buyers, they’ll neatly do the trick.




Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).

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