iPhones Could Get Facial Recognition

John Lister's picture

Apple is working on facial recognition as an iPhone security measure. It's said to be have it ready for this year's iPhone 8, but may wait until the feature has been fully tested and complete.

The idea is to replace fingerprint scanning for unlocking the phone. It's not yet confirmed if and when the facial recognition would be extended to other uses, such as using Apple Pay rather than have to type in card details or a PIN code.

According to a Bloomberg source, the face unlock takes less than half a second to scan a face, confirm its identity and unlock the phone. The feature works even when the device is some distance from the face, for example if it is lying on a table and the user looks at it. (Source: bloomberg.com)

Face Scanned In 3D

The scanning works through a three-dimensional scanner and is said to capture more data points than the finger print scanner, making it more reliable to tell one person apart from another.

Apple is also said to be working on eye scanning, which would likely be an additional layer of security. The 3D scanning is very important, as it should overcome a problem Samsung experienced with eye scanning on its Galaxy S8 phone. In this instance, someone was unable to unlock the phone using a contact lens placed over a photograph of the person's eye, taken from several meters away. While that was somewhat convoluted, it could be viable for trying to steal and access a specific target's phone, for example in corporate espionage or political spying.

Feature Allows Full-Screen Display

It appears the facial recognition isn't just an attempt to boost security on the iPhone, but also serves a design purpose. Repeated rumors suggest Apple wants to make new models that have a touchscreen covering the entire face of the phone, maximizing the display for uses such as watching video. (Source: zdnet.com)

While that would still make it possible to have a "virtual" home button at the bottom of the screen that would disappear in full-screen mode, it would be tricky if not difficult to put a fingerprint scanner underneath a display. Switching security methods would thus avoid having to relocate the fingerprint scanner, for example to the back of the phone.

What's Your Opinion?

Would you be happy to use a facial recognition scanner? Do you trust Apple to keep the relevant data and images secure? Does any of your tech have biometric features such as fingerprint scanners and if so do you use them or fall back on traditional passwords and PIN codes?

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ecash's picture

I have problems with making things complicated..

And find SIMPLE ways always work better, and are easy to do..
An encoded Micro SD card would be easy. A NON-PASSWORD password would be good..Like a picture of pictures and tapping the screen only at certain points.. Drawing a pattern on the screen..

A story about a Chinese corp, had a person leaving to the car park, and going to his High priced car...Only to be held up.. They requested he OPEN the car and turn the ignition on..HE DID, and they took the car..as long as its ON. they can go anywhere. When they turn it OFF, they have to remove the FINGER PRINT ID SYSTEM.. HE opened the car for 1 BIG REASON, he liked his hand..

With Facial ID, I suggest then do something WEIRD and use the WHOLE face, not POINTS.. Do a HAND SIGN infront of the phone with your face behind.. Would give more protection then a PICTURE IN A FRAME to tell the phone your ID..

I also go by the IDEA, that I PUT NOTHING on the phone that isnt Important of NOT backed up..