Facial recognition of Android phones defeated with 3D-printed head; Apple’s iPhone was impenetrable

“Facial recognition on smartphones is supposed to protect your digital life,” Thomas Brewster reports for Forbes. “If you’re an Android customer, though, look away from your screen now. We tested four of the hottest handsets running Google’s operating systems and Apple’s iPhone to see how easy it’d be to break into them. We did it with a 3D-printed head. All of the Androids opened with the fake. Apple’s phone, however, was impenetrable.”

“For our tests, we used my own real-life head to register for facial recognition across five phones. An iPhone X and four Android devices: an LG G7 ThinQ, a Samsung S9, a Samsung Note 8 and a OnePlus 6. I then held up my fake head to the devices to see if the device would unlock,” Brewster reports. “For all four Android phones, the spoof face was able to open the phone, though with differing degrees of ease. The iPhone X was the only one to never be fooled.”

“Apple’s investment in its tech – which saw the company work with a Hollywood studio to create realistic masks to test Face ID – has clearly paid off,” Brewster reports. “It was impossible to break in with the model.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As if you didn’t know already, here’s further proof that Android devices are half-assed knockoffs of genuine Apple innovations.

10 Comments

  1. Hey MDN, you lose credibility to call this an Apple innovation when they didn’t do it first !
    Yes Apple does things better most cases, but since you obviously like to ignore the facts, these features came fist to Android: OLED screens, Raise to wake, edge to edge screens, wireless charging, waterproofing, fast charging, Hey Siri, large screens, Face ID, Tap to wake, notification center, “quick type” and more if you care to search.
    I am an iOS user, but I get irked by MDN’s blatant drinking of the koolaid when it comes across as arrogance. Plus I’m a little PO’d at Apple this week over a couple of things and this is my way to vent.

    1. Think before you post! My recollection is that Android “Face ID” operated using a simple optical image – no 3-D depth detection technology. It could be fooled with a simple photograph.

      Personally, I would not call that real “Face ID.” In fact, I don’t even think that a flawed approach like that even qualifies as a “feature.” But I wouldn’t want to “irk” you, lol

      1. First means first, even if it is poorly done. It’s normal & expected that later versions of a thing will be better.

        To argue that is to say that Apple’s inventions aren’t valid because someone did it better after them (e.g., iOS paradigm)

    2. you dont have to drink koolaid.. just have a perspective…
      1. iPhone had one of the largest screens when launched. Sjobs even mentioned in keynote… large screen is just a comparison…its not a feature…look when iPad launched…

      OLED screens though better than LCD, its not developed or owned by single company…anybody can do it, its not innovative like FaceID which is developed by Apple, and others not able to copy even after a year.
      Raise to wake, edge to edge screens, wireless charging, waterproofing, fast charging…all these are small improvements using existing technologies… wireless charging, fast charging etc were available from many years on phones…so I dont think Apple is claiming them as innovations here… are they?

      So, the basic point here is that Apple spending money on major breakthroughs where as other happily waiting and copying later…

      For example:
      iOS – a full featured desktop class phone OS – world’s first.
      TouchID – There was no fingerprint sensor like this before even on desktops – world’s first
      FaceID – There was no face detection like this even on desktops – world’s first
      The Taptic Engine – World’s first
      Multi Touch Capacitive screen – World’s first.
      and more…

      See the pattern – Apple did not just take desktop features and attach them to phones (Like Moto did with fingerprint sensor). Apple works on features until they are ready for primetime. Just look at Samesung’s fingerprint sensor on their S5 which launched after Apple TouchID. It is a shame to Apple when compare Apple with Samesung.

  2. Hey MDN, you lose credibility to call REAL facial ID of REAL faces an innovation. Other companies had id of fake faces first.
    Yes, Apple does things PROPERLY, in nearly all cases, but you obviously ignore the crappy, inadequate versions of many versions that came to Android first.

    By the way, ivid, “arrogance” is astronomically overused and has long, long since passed any usefulness as a point — here or anywhere.

  3. …ultimately, though, I think of what cell phones from Samsung, LG, etc looked like BEFORE the iPhone, and soon AFTER the iPhone, and then wonder who copied who.

  4. What MDN might be missing is that if Apple didn’t have competitiors, they would disallow 3D printing in the name of security (and cost savings), instead of as they did… by stepping up.

    Meanwhile, no mention of laptops being fooled by 3D printing.

  5. What MDN might be missing is that if Apple didn’t have competitors, they would disallow 3D printing in the name of security (and cost savings), instead of as they did… by stepping up.

    Meanwhile, no mention of laptops being fooled by 3D printing.

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