Apple is working on a 3D face scanning feature that could replace Touch ID in iPhone 8, reports Bloomberg. Citing sources familiar with the product, the outlet says that the “improved security system” allows users to log in, authenticate payments, and launch secure apps by scanning their face.
This is powered by a new 3-D sensor, added the people, who asked not to be identified discussing technology that’s still in development. The company is also testing eye scanning to augment the system, one of the people said.
The sensor’s speed and accuracy are focal points of the feature. It can scan a user’s face and unlock the iPhone within a few hundred milliseconds, the person said. It is designed to work even if the device is laying flat on a table, rather than just close up to the face. The feature is still being tested and may not appear with the new device. However, the intent is for it to replace the Touch ID fingerprint scanner, according to the person.
Apple wouldn’t be the first tech company to integrate face-scanning tech into its handset. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 has an iris scanner that can be used to unlock the phone, although it has received mostly negative reviews. Apple’s face-scanning sensor is believed to be more secure, thanks to 3D depth perception.
Thus far, a majority of the leaks and reports we’ve seen regarding the iPhone 8 have pointed to a device without a Home button, leading many to believe Apple found a way to embed Touch ID into the display. Noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, however, agrees with Bloomberg’s facial recognition theory.