Facial recognition technology in smartphone isn’t new. Android had a similar feature way back in the day, although admittedly it wasn’t exactly a robust or secure feature that could be easily bypassed by a photo. However it was in 2017 that Apple introduced Face ID, its own take on facial recognition that the company claims is near-impossible to fool.
That’s something that Thomas Brewster at Forbes decided to test out for himself, and to see how secure Face ID was and also to test what the Android competition was offering, he created a 3D printed head of himself to test out the various systems currently in place. According to Brewster, it was a rather elaborate process that involved 50 cameras that attempted to capture his likeness at every conceivable angle, meaning that this was created to be as detailed and realistic as possible.
Unfortunately it seems that it did not fool Apple’s Face ID because based on his tests, the iPhone X was the only device that was not tricked. The other Android phones that he tested included the LG G7 ThinQ, the Samsung Galaxy S9, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, and the OnePlus 6 (we’re not sure why he did not use newer handsets).
To be fair, companies such as LG and Samsung had put warning messages that suggested that facial recognition on their devices might not be as secure as using a PIN, password, or pattern. However based on his tests, Brewster actually found that LG’s facial recognition system got more difficult to fool the more it was used, which LG later confirmed was by design.