iOS 13.5 beta makes iPhone unlocking easier when wearing a mask

Due to COVID-19 mitigation, many people are wearing face masks in public, but Apple’s Face ID iPhones do not unlock when the face is obscured by a mask. In response, Apple’s iOS 13.5 beta makes unlocking an iPhone with passcode easier when wearing a face mask.

Apple iPhone’s Face ID facial recognition isn’t made for use with masks, which the CDC now recommends we all wear in order to limit the spread of COVID-19. “Face ID is designed to work with your eyes, nose and mouth visible,” an Apple spokeswoman said earlier this month.

Apple's iOS 13.5 beta makes unlocking an iPhone with passcode easier when wearing a mask
Apple’s iOS 13.5 beta makes unlocking an iPhone with passcode easier when wearing a mask (Image via MacRumors)

Juli Clover for MacRumors:

In the iOS 13.5 beta, released this morning, Apple has streamlined the speed with which the passcode pops up when a person wearing a mask is detected, making it easier to get into an iPhone with a passcode when Face ID fails.

Speedier access to the passcode interface is noticeable when you swipe upwards on the Home screen when unlocking the ‌iPhone‌, as this action now immediately brings up the passcode interface if your face is covered by a mask.

MacDailyNews Take: Excellent move as usual by Apple to make things easier for the user! Now there’s one less reason not to wear a mask in public while COVID-19 lurks sans vaccine.


  1. God forbid that we should survive without a vaccine…because of course ONLY 99% of the people exposed to the virus and ONLY 100% of the people that have survived did so WITHOUT one.

    The vaccine cannot come soon enough! /end sarcasm/

    1. I’m not wearing a mask when out and about to protect myself. I’m wearing a mask in order to protect my parents and grandparents until a vaccine is available for them.

      1. I think it is important to protect the most vulnerable populations.

        Just keep in mind that a vaccine does NOT guarantee protection. For comparison, even the flu vaccine is frequently less than 50% effective (the latest ones were between 37 and 50%) (, also, and that is IF they get the strain right for that season. Even so, viruses can and do mutate so by the time a vaccine is available, it may be ineffective. (I know this is not the flu but is an example of the effectiveness of vaccines.)

        Here is some more food for thought, based on some examples:
        – 30% or more of VACCINATED individuals still die of the flu (
        – Interesting that many vaccines are not recommended for the following populations that they are supposed to protect. This includes young children, pregnant women, older adults, and people with chronic health conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and asthma. (

        By the way, did you get your swine flu shot yet? Recall that the spread of that only 9-10 years ago was worse (61 million world wide) and killed almost as many as this virus. How many are still concerned about it?

        1. smayer97: your quote

          “30% or more of VACCINATED individuals still die of the flu (”

          You state 30% or more of vaccinated people die of the flu. That is absolutely wrong. You don’t know your numbers.

          With just a cursory look, I found that in the 2017-2018 flu season (different year, I know) manufacturers of the flu vaccine shipped approximately 155 MILLION doses of flu vaccine in the US market. Lets say only 90 percent of the doses were actually administered which translates into approximately 139.5 Millions vaccinations. Are you saying that 30 % of these individuals died? That would translate into roughly 41 or 42 MILLION people who died in the 2017-2018 flu season. I don’t think that happened here on Earth.

          What you probably meant to imply was that of the people (pediatrics, in this study) who died in this study (153 deaths of high-risk medical conditions) 31% were vaccinated (47 people).

          Looking at ONLY that statistic, 69% of deaths were in patients NOT vaccinated. Partial information is dangerous, the study authors’ conclusion is:

          CONCLUSIONS: Influenza vaccination was associated with reduced risk of laboratory-confirmed influenza-associated pediatric death. Increasing influenza vaccination could prevent influenza-associated deaths among children and adolescents.

          It is proven that vaccines work. Smallpox is a superb example of a worldwide push to eradicate a deadly, dangerous disease. The smallpox vaccine absolutely worked. The last known naturally occurring case was in 1977 and was certified eradicated in 1980. Some vaccines are much more effective due to organism characteristics while others no so much due to the bacteria/virus mutating frequently. There are other factors involved but too much to go into detail here.

          Read up on herd immunity. That is significant also.

          PS: Per CDC,

          From April 12, 2009 to April 10, 2010, CDC estimated there were 60.8 million cases (range: 43.3-89.3 million), 274,304 hospitalizations (range: 195,086-402,719), and 12,469 deaths (range: 8868-18,306) in the United States due to the (H1N1)pdm09 virus.
          Additionally, CDC estimated that 151,700-575,400 people worldwide died from (H1N1)pdm09 virus infection during the first year the virus circulated.

          Pharmacist here.

          1. @pablorph Very sorry. I worded that VERY POORLY!…. You are correct. I was trying to say that over 30% of those that died were vaccinated. Sorry for any misleading statement…it was not intended. (that is why I provided the sample source of the info so it can be scrutinized).

            But the point I was making is that vaccinations do NOT guarantee protection, in other words vaccination does NOT automatically equal immunization. And they come with their own issues. As a pharmacist, I am sure you are familiar with the concept of shedding, and other potential issues such as the potential reduction of immunity to other diseases, or even the cause of such, among other issues, however limited that may be.

            I do understand the concept of herd immunity. But as per the issues above, vaccines do not guarantee such an effect. And there are other ways to achieve that which does not involve vaccination. If that were not so, we would not have survived the thousands of years against the millions of bacteria and viruses that occupy our lives and bodies all the time.

            All I am trying to do is dispel the concept that somewhat a vaccine is iron clad protection. It is only a tool that MAY help. But it is important to approach them with scrutiny, just like ANY OTHER medication, as they are not appropriate for everyone. There are counter-indications to when they should not be taken, as per the examples I highlighted already, just for starters.

            I am not saying that vaccines cannot be effective. But many have not worked, and even many have been proven harmful. It is just important that people approach vaccines like any other medication (because that is what they are), understanding the pros, cons and risks and to make an informed decision, AND to realize they are not the end all and be all of protection. And in this case, we already see that 99% of the population are quite capable of surviving this thing without vaccines (recognizing that some do require some assistance).

            (As for smallpox, that is a whole other discussion that would take too long to get into but there are other factors at play beyond vaccines that contributed to this eradication).

            1. The problem is that we did NOT survive for thousands of years against millions of viruses and bacteria. Only some of us did. The Empress Maria Theresa of Austria (1717-1780) had access to the best medical support in the world, but of the 13 of her 16 children who survived infancy, three died of smallpox, as did two of her daughters-in-law. The Empress herself never fully recovered from her smallpox, and another child was so badly scarred that she never married.

              The Western Hemisphere had a population of 54 to 112 million in 1491. By 1650, the native population was less than 6 million. The European population fell by 60% fron 1347 to 1350. That is what relying on natural immunity against a novel disease gets you.

              The early indications were that the novel coronavirus could have that sort of impact. It turned out to be less lethal than the highest estimates, but even with isolation in place it killed as many Americans in eight weeks as the Viet Cong did in ten years. It is prudent to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

              It may be true that 99% of those exposed survived without a vaccine (although that is far from sure), but about 20% of those who were sick enough to call a doctor required hospitalization. Their survival was not due to the resilience of their unaided immune systems, but to the medical skill of their carers.

    2. smayer97: You are an idiot and apparently an antivaxxer (frequently synonymous). Mortality rate of COVID-19 is higher than 1%. And even though survivors of COVID-19 may be alive they can also have long term effects from the infection. As a healthcare worker who has taken care of COVID-19 patients, I have to say your level of ignorance is pretty astounding, even for an American.

      1. @Aaron Anderson… you so reveal your ignorance and prejudice. First, I am not even American. Second, it is easy to label someone to place them in a box so you can easily dismiss them. Third, you know nothing of my background.

        I believe in educating others and want to have the right to information and educated choice. There are pros and cons and risks that do not fit every person based on their condition. Shutting down conversation is not the way to handle this topic. You as a healthcare worker, of all people, should appreciate that. That only promotes ignorance, the very thing you seem to be criticizing.

        There is such a thing as informed consent. If you really care about patients, you would seek to make sure that they are properly equipped with both sides of the discussion so they can make an informed decision.

        1. While it is true that everybody who has survived coronavirus thus far did so without the aid of a vaccine, it is also true that everybody who survived smallpox before 1796 did so without a vaccine and everybody who visited the upper floors of a building before 1856 did so without a safety elevator. So what?

          If you are determined to ignore recommended distancing requirements, the notion of “informed consent” does not apply because most of the individuals who might be affected were not informed of your action and did not consent to it.

          1. @TxUser in reference to my original post above, yes, what you say is exactly right. But the first part of your reply only addresses my second statement. You are building a strawman argument by taking it out of context. The context is also that over 99% of cases are recovering without a vaccine. And the context of my reply was in addressing the issue of vaccines. That is hugely critical. In other words, it is NOT vaccines that has helped ANYONE in the context of the W/C-Virus, and given that the recovery rate is SO HIGH, there is little justification to look to a vaccine as a saviour.

            As for your reply about informed consent (which again was in the context of using drugs/vaccines), but using your logic, this would apply to EVERY SINGLE communicable diseases. Welcome to the human race. EVERY TIME you go out into society you ARE applying “informed consent”. So unless you are willing to never socialize ever again, you might want to rethink that logic. Or do you plan to try to sue someone every time you get a cold?

            1. @CitizenX “1% is ~ 3.7 million people a year.”

              death rates are based on the people that are exposed to the disease, not the entire population.

      1. @cheule death is NEVER pretty. And when you or a loved one is affected, it is VERY sad indeed.

        But you do realize that there are FAR MORE deaths caused by other issues EVERY YEAR, right? Stats from the CDC for the US alone:
        Number of deaths for leading causes of death:

        Heart disease: 647,457
        Cancer: 599,108
        Accidents (unintentional injuries): 169,936
        Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 160,201
        Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 146,383
        Alzheimer’s disease: 121,404
        Diabetes: 83,564
        Influenza and Pneumonia: 55,672
        Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome and nephrosis: 50,633
        Intentional self-harm (suicide): 47,173

        Infant Mortality rate: 5.79 deaths per 1,000 live births
        Number of births: 3,791,712 = 21,954

        This does not even include the number of euthanasia cases or yearly abortions of 623,471 (2016 number, 2019 would be higher and likely to be the number one cause of deaths)

        These are stats for EVERY SINGLE YEAR. So far all we can say for sure is this new virus is hitting hard the most vulnerable because it is new, but like H1N1 Swine flu was in 2009, it will likely fade (though that is still to be confirmed, though there is much data to support this) but when was the last time you heard anything about it? Almost 61 Million people in the US alone had the disease and it is still around killing people by the way.

        When was the last time that the healthy were quarantined? Even more so, when was the last time we shut down the world economy over those causes UNTIL A SOLUTION WAS FOUND?

        This does not even include the number of euthanasia cases or yearly abortions of 623,471 (2016 number, 2019 would be higher)

        MANY people die for all kinds of other reasons too. Not trying to minimize the impact of this virus BUT let’s keep things in perspective.

  2. I certainly don’t want to start an argument on the “third-rail” subject of abortion, but what is your evidence that they reversed their long-term trend and increased from 2016 to 2019? Those years saw both a continued fall in premarital sex and unplanned pregnancies and a rise in state regulations that restrict access.

    Bringing abortion into this debate is particularly risky for somebody who is arguing for a balancing test on coronavirus strategies that accepts loss of human life as an acceptable cost for avoiding financial and psychological harm to other individuals. The Right to Life Movement has been pretty adamant that it is never appropriate in beginning or end of life situations to apply any balancing at all.

    1. I didn’t and don’t mean to go divert the conversation. I merely was trying to put into perspective the numbers around other causes of death vs COVID-19 so that this topic is approached with more level-headedness.

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