Embarrassing Face ID fail wipes billions off Apple's market value

Apple CEO Tim Cook, announces the new iPhone X at the Steve Jobs Theater on the new Apple campus on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017, in Cupertino, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Apple’s share price fell dramatically on Tuesday after an embarrassing live demo failed during a highly-anticipated unveiling of the new iPhone X.

Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, struggled to unlock the device as he attempted to demonstrate a new feature that allows iPhone X users to utilise facial recognition technology to unlock the handset.

MORE: Apple reveals iPhone X, 8, and 8 Plus

“Here is iPhone 10 [X]. Now unlocking it is as easy as looking at it and swiping up…” Federighi starts.

After his attempt fails Federighi says “let’s try that again”, before having another go which proves unsuccessful. The Apple executive then uses a back-up method to unlock the phone and continues with the presentation.

The hiccup during Apple’s presentation caused the share price to slide significantly (Yahoo Finance UK)

The setback meant Apple’s share price fell by around $4, dropping from approximately $163 per share to $159 per share, wiping approximately $20 billion off the tech firm’s market cap value.

Apple’s share price recovered slightly after the incident to close at just over $160 per share.

MORE: New iPhone X launch: Brits will have to pay at least £47 a month for new model

Chris Bailey, markets analyst and founder of Financial Orbit, said the firm had experienced stock market “euphoria” in the days running up to the Apple Special Event, as people eagerly awaited news of its latest products.

The new iPhone X is displayed in the showroom after the new product announcement at the Steve Jobs Theater on the new Apple campus on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017, in Cupertino, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

“There is an old saying in the investment world that the stock market is “all about fear and greed”. We have seen both aspects of this in the last few days as regards the Apple share price. The world’s most valuable company saw its share price rise to record levels in the days leading up to the launch event as the hope factor about what a new range of iPhones could mean for the company’s sales and profitability,” he said.

MORE: ‘Minority report style face scanning’ – iPhone X’s Face ID creeps out the internet 

“Sometimes though, it is better to travel than arrive and such euphoria can reverse quickly – as shown by the decline in the shares when one of the firm’s executives struggled to unlock the phone using Face ID during yesterday’s presentation.

“Such is the fickle nature of the stock market on a day-by-day basis. Ultimately however whether the shares are higher or lower by this time next year depends largely on Apple’s ability to sell us all their new phones and make good money doing so.”