With the iPhone 5s, Apple has introduced Touch ID which basically provides its users a layer of security that identifies the user through their fingerprints. While Touch ID is reported to be pretty decent and responsive, it does not mean that it is the perfect system, and a recent Apple patent has suggested that the Cupertino company could be looking at facial detection/recognition as a means of providing added security as well. However as with the case with most patents, there’s no telling if and when Apple will implement it, but based on our understanding of this particular patent, it does sound like a pretty good idea.
Imagine this scenario where you hand your phone to your friend or family member, and while they are using your device, an email or message comes in that you might not want them to see for whatever reasons, but due to your phone’s notifications, they will be able to get a glimpse of said message. According to this patent by Apple, by using facial recognition, the phone will be able to recognize if the person holding the device is the owner. Assuming that they aren’t, the notification might not be displayed.
The patent also describes how facial recognition will allow the phone to allow access to certain features, so if you have a friend who likes to mess with your phone’s settings, they won’t be able to do so because the phone can detect that they are not the owner. Like we said this sounds like a great idea, but facial recognition has been somewhat iffy, with systems bypassed by showing a photo of the owner, rather than their actual face, so this is something Apple needs to take into consideration as well if they were to implement it.