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The map of your face used in the new 3D face unlock feature is also stored in the Titan M.

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When using this method of authentication, the new face capture is compared to the stored version in the Titan M security chip, minimizing any tampering opportunity. Even the lock screen passcode is verified within the Titan M.

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To ensure Titan M remains uncompromised, its firmware will never be updated unless you input your passcode. It even protects against bootloader tampering, the firmware in charge of starting up Android. Rollback protection, a feature that prevents hackers from downgrading your phone to an older and less secure version of Android, is also provided by the Titan M.

Google has been aggressively hardening Android's security for the last few years. One of the biggest updates came in with Android 9, which included more than 12 major changes that specifically target privacy and security. Android 10 has only expanded on this with improved location permissions and additional protections that change how apps can interact with your personal data — for example, apps can no longer read your clipboard under any circumstances.

New to the Pixel series this year is 3D face unlock.

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With Android 10's native support for facial recognition, you can use this technology to authenticate yourself for sensitive transactions such as payments. As with Face ID, Google's facial recognition is more secure than other biometrics thanks to the detailed mapping of your face. You might think a phone made by Google shouldn't be considered a top pick for privacy, but none of the Pixel's extra features beyond those included with stock Android give Google any more access to your personal data.

As with any phone or computer, if you use Google services, Google may record a history of that activity. But security is where this phone really excels. With Google's hardware- and software-based protections, you are relatively safe on the web. You're even protected against spam calls thanks to the AI-powered Call Screen features. Thanks to three years of full OS updates, protection will only get better over the life of the phone. Samsung has a long history of catering to enterprise users. To tap into this larger market segment, they had to improve their devices' security beyond the basics provided by Android.

The result was Samsung Knox , a combination of hardware and software to provide deep-level protection that starts at the SoC. And while regular consumers don't have access to many of these features, they are available for any company you join with a BYOD policy. Samsung has joined Apple and Google in creating their own security chip specifically designed to manage sensitive transactions and isolate private data. It is in this chip that Samsung manages Samsung Pass, Secure Folder, and many of its numerous security features.

This key is unique to each device and is used, alongside the Secure Boot key, to detect any tampering with the operating system or bootloader. It is because of these keys that it is nearly impossible to flash custom software on the Galaxy S20 Ultra Exynos variant without tripping the Knox Counter, a hardware-based flag that activates once you attempt to load any custom recovery or firmware. Once tripped, Knox is no longer available as the security and protection advertised by Samsung can no longer be guaranteed.

Knox also includes Samsung Defex, a patch to the kernel that prevents root from being granted to apps even after root was successful. So even if you trip the fuse and forgo access to Knox, Knox is still protecting you. Real-Time Kernel Protection tracks kernel changes and prevents the phone from booting if any tampering has been done. Samsung is one of the few Android phones that will wipe your data upon subsequent failed login attempts. When enabled, after 15 failed attempts, the phone will automatically factory reset itself to protect your data from the intruder. With the Galaxy S20 Ultra, you get the power of Knox to protect you each day.

Its extensive protection covers you even if you manage to root the device, something few other OEMs offer. At its core is Android 10, the more secure and stable version of Android yet, that keeps you safe when using apps or browsing the web. And with Samsung's recent track record, you can expect up to date security patches for years to come. I'm sure you've seen Apple's ads that focus on privacy. It is a theme that Apple has been pushing recently, and rightly so.

Not only has iOS been considered the more secure platform for years, but the FBI famously couldn't crack it. With the iPhone 11 Pro Max, you have an even more secure iPhone thanks to improvements to iOS 13 and Face ID that make it challenging for anyone but yourself to access. With iOS 13, Apple is making users more informed about their apps. Similar to Android 10, if an app accesses your location in the background, you'll get a notification with the option to deny it future access or limit location usage to only while the app is open.


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In prior versions, Bluetooth was accessible to apps without regard to why an app needed this permission. In iOS 13, apps must define how they plan to use Bluetooth and you're able to allow or deny access. Find My has been a staple in iOS for years, allowing you to track your Apple devices remotely along with other anti-theft protections. New with iOS 13 is the ability to track your iPhone even when the device is offline.

So if someone steals your iPhone and disables its internet connection to abscond from Find My, it sends an encrypted location report to any nearby iOS 13 devices via Bluetooth, which can then upload the report to Find My on your behalf.


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  6. But the most significant privacy addition is the "Sign in with Apple" feature. Facebook and Google have had sign-in options for years, allowing you to log into a third-party app with your corresponding account. But this typically gives the app access to some of your data on those accounts. With the new "Sign in with Apple" button, you can sign in with essentially a throwaway email address that relays messages to your real email address. So your data is safe and it's easy to ghost the service if you want to.

    Now let's turn our attention to the hardware. Over 30, dots are projected onto your face to create a 3D depth map. This map is then encrypted and stored in the Secure Enclave, an isolated environment of the SoC. Hand ID lets you unlock your phone by holding your palm in front of the time-of-flight camera. In theory, anyway.

    Instead of taps and swipes, you hold your hand about a six inches from the front camera until your hand is recognized. Then you can wave to do things like play music and answer calls, and twist to raise and lower the volume. It's something people are going to want to try out and it might even convince a few people to buy one. However, it doesn't nothing to make the G8 better.

    It's still easier to press the buttons. There's nothing wrong with the G8's camera, there's just not much new about it either. Like the G7, the G8 has a dual camera, and the specs are very similar:.

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    As such, the two phones take very similar pics. In an age of triple and quadruple cameras, the G8's array feels a little pedestrian.

    Its ultra-wide lens is no longer a novelty, and what was once a leading camera app is more or less run-of-the-mill now. The G8 left captured better color and detail than the G7 center in this Lego figure, but again, the Google Pixel 3 right is a clearly winner. The G8's camera offers a few improvements. However, the Pixel 3 right took the low-light crown, with better brightening and detail than either phone.