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Facial Recognition Is Only the Beginning

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Apple iPhone X facial recognition

Apple's iPhone X will include facial recognition when it's released in November, and it's likely that more phones will soon use biometric authentication, too.

Apple says the inclusion of its Face ID technology in the upcoming iPhone X will make smartphone unlocking, payment, and other operations possible via facial recognition.

The company notes Face ID uses a sensor array to map the user's face in three dimensions (3D) via infrared illumination, while a camera captures and stores a facial image for authentication. Apple also says the technology is highly spoof-proof, partly because Face ID is trained on realistic-looking 3D masks.

"3D does have the effect of wiping out simple spoofs — you can't hold up a picture anymore and expect it to do anything," says University of Notre Dame professor Kevin Bowyer.

Apple also claims the app can authenticate people under dim lighting conditions, even if the user is wearing a hat or glasses, or has grown a beard.

Meanwhile, Michigan State University professor Anil Jain thinks Apple's innovation may eventually lead to smartphones incorporating face-, iris-, and fingerprint-recognition systems.

From Technology Review
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