Apple’s ‘iPhone 8’ may perform magical facial recognition while resting on a flat surface

“Code found in Apple’s HomePod firmware may suggest that the ‘iPhone 8’s’ facial recognition system —internally dubbed ‘Pearl’ — will be able to scan someone and unlock a device while it’s resting on a flat surface, instead of forcing users to pick it up and aim the camera,” Roger Fingas reports for AppleInsider.

“Code strings include the likes of ‘AXRestingPearlUnlock’ and ‘,’ iHelp BR noted this weekend,” Fingas reports. “The term ‘resting’ appears in reference to Pearl several other times.”

“Some other interesting code strings include ‘APPS_USING_PEARL’ and ‘PEARL_AUTOLOCK,’ iHelp BR observed. The first hints at an option to unlock specific apps using facial recognition, something that would be necessary to replace Touch ID,” Fingas reports. “The latter could simply block access to people the phone doesn’t know.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We expect to hear from Apple that “Face ID works so well that Touch ID is no longer required” and, of course, that it’s “magical,” if not “stunning.”


    1. It needs to have a safety measure like ignore facial recognition, if tongue is out or eyes crewed up. I wrote that as a joke but the more I think about it…

  1. Facial unlock is going to be an interesting development in privacy and court cases. Much easier for authorities to flash your phone in front of your face to unlock then force you to use your thumb or finger.

  2. So what I’m hearing is that it must map an area within so many feet of the phone with a multidimensional “SONAR” type technology. In other words, it analyzes a space near the phone and if it detects the shape of your face/body/etc in some sort of algorithm that combines these things and allows for subtle changes (like the 12 beers and pizza you ate Friday night) . . . then it allows the phone to unlock. And if it’s really smart, it’d know if you’re blinking or moving “naturally” so it knows you’re not sleeping or something and that you’re “alive.” That’s what I’m imagining . . . and it won’t be easily mimicked by other companies due to the complexity of the software and the requirement of particularly robust hardware.

  3. Since a phone lying on a table is well below the level of one’s chin, I suspect that Apple has achieved a breakthrough in nose hair pattern recognition.

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