Apple won’t release an under-display Touch ID iPhone anytime soon, even if your brother can unlock your Face ID iPhone

Apple’s iPhones are great smartphones, and they’ve been like that for the past few years. No matter which side of the Android versus iOS debate you stand on, it’s hard not to recognize the iPhone as a piece of technology against which everyone in the industry tries to compete. Whatever Apple does with the iPhone, the smartphone industry makes fun of the first year and then shamelessly imitates the next year. Apple, on the other hand, is very slow to jump to new technology, and Android OEMs usually have features for years before the Cupertino-based giant decides to adopt them. One such situation is the under-display fingerprint sensor, a technology that Android OEMs have adopted since 2018. If you’ve been waiting for Apple to adopt an in-display fingerprint sensor, you’ll have to wait a few more years, regardless of Touch ID. There are many issues of their own.

Under-display Touch ID is delayed on iPhone

According to eminent analyst ming-chi kuoiPhones to be released in 2023 and 2024 will not adopt under-display Touch ID. Ku previously predicted that 2023 could be the year Apple makes the leap towards under-display technology on the iPhone. But this prediction is now being revised, indicating that 3 more generations of iPhones will have to pass before we have a chance to look back at Touch ID as an under-display solution.

Note that the prediction does not explicitly mention that the iPhone will adopt an under-display Touch ID in 2026. For one, making accurate predictions at this stage is too far into the future. And Apple hasn’t submitted anything to suggest either that they’re interested in bringing Touch ID back. This is where the problem arises.

PSA: Face ID on iPhone may have evolved to be unlocked by your sibling

When Apple made the jump from Touch ID to Face ID with the iPhone X, much was claimed about its superiority. Compared to Face Unlock as it was present on Android smartphones, Face ID was and remains much more secure – Android phones match only an optical analogy, while Apple performs a far more accurate 3D scan. 3D facial scan is very accurate, and Apple claims that only 1 in 1,000,000 is able to unlock another random person’s own iPhone with their face. Compared to the 1 in 50,000 error rate for Touch ID, Face ID appears to be a far more secure solution.

However these claims come with fine print, and which I feel have not been publicized enough. Yes, you can’t dodge Face ID by grabbing a simple photo, you can beat it with a face that looks just like you. As Apple itself notes in its documentation (emphasis added):

The chances that a random person in the population could look at your iPhone or iPad Pro and unlock it using Face ID is less than 1 in 1,000,000 with a single enrolled presence, whether you’re wearing a mask or not. As an added security, Face ID only allows five failed matching attempts before a passcode is required. The statistical probability is higher – and using Face ID with a mask – for twins and siblings who look like you and for children under the age of 13 because their distinctive facial features are not fully developed. can. If you’re concerned about this, we recommend using a passcode to authenticate. You can also use Face ID without a mask by enabling Face ID.

Apple does not determine this statistical probability. And there’s no way to know if they even account for the fact that these strangers (twins and siblings) are more likely to be in physical proximity of your iPhone than a random person with the same fingerprint as your iPhone. Huh.

So when I found out that my brother could just accidentally open my iPhone 13 Pro, I was really (and rightfully) shocked.

My brother is 6 years younger than me, but we look pretty much alike – as siblings often do. We’re not twins though, and the age difference between us, as well as our personal preferences on hair and facial hair, ensure that we definitely don’t look like photocopies of each other at any point. I was under the impression that this would be enough to keep my iPhone close to me. However, all my brother has to do to unlock my iPhone is just look at it. Since we live in the same house (which means he has lots of opportunities to physically access my iPhone), the net effect is that my iPhone can do can be unlocked very easily and over and over again by someone who is not me—and it’s just crazy,

Before you jump into the angry comments, let me make a few things clear. One, there’s only one presence on my iPhone, and that’s mine. No alternate appearance is nominated, neither mine, nor my brother’s. I had set up Face ID unlock with mask, but my brother can still unlock my phone by disabling this option. I also have apple watch unlocked, but my brother can again disable my phone with this option. No, he doesn’t have my passcode, and he doesn’t really need it either. [I would have presented video proof of this whole charade, but my sibling is not comfortable being recorded for use on the Internet, and so you have to take my word on this sibling-unlocking happening.]

The only explanation I’ve found is that it’s kind of intentional. As noted in Apple’s documentation, it is possible to train Face ID to work on faces that are identical.

Face ID automatically adapts to changes in your appearance, such as wearing cosmetic makeup or growing facial hair. If there is a more significant change in your appearance, such as shaving off a full beard, Face ID verifies your identity using your passcode before updating your facial data.

and further:

This data will be refined and updated when you use Face ID to improve your experience, including the time you successfully authenticated. Face ID will also update this data when it detects a close match but after a passcode is entered to unlock the device.

Essentially, if my brother or another close likeness tries unsuccessfully to unlock Face ID and then I enter the password to unlock the phone, Face ID will learn it to update my presence in its database. , will merge my archived presence into it. new appearance. Every failed Face ID + successful password unlock will train the AI ​​behind Face Unlock to perform better in the future. The caveat, then, is that this makes it entirely possible that eventually, your iPhone could be unlocked by your brother, especially if they have frequent access to your phone, even if such unlocking or training was not done intentionally. So don’t be surprised if one day your brother can suddenly open your iPhone with his face.

Touch ID > Face ID

In terms of what I’ve determined, I’ve been forced to disable Face ID on my iPhone. I trust my brother won’t get into my personal data, but I’m still extremely uncomfortable with it much thought That he has unlimited access to every single piece of information on my iPhone, including my banking and investment apps.

In a world with Touch ID iPhones, I have to worry about a small chance of bumping into someone who has the same fingerprint as mine, who has access to my iPhone and wants to get into it. In a world with AI-based Face ID iPhones, there’s little chance I’ll ever meet a stranger who looks like my face. But what about a sibling who can already unlock my Face ID iPhone?

iPhone Face ID 3

In my current reality, I wish I could switch back to a Touch ID iPhone. There is no way to disable Face ID from the presence of Learn and Evolve. So even if I reset my archived appearance, it’s only a matter of days and weeks before it matches the two faces again. Apple’s eloquent solution here is to simply ask users to disable Face ID completely, and that’s what I did for now. Since I already haven’t been able to easily unlock my iPhone in the last two years because I had a mask on (Apple took its sweet time rolling out face mask-based unlocking), the inconvenience is rather familiar. . A part of me still hoped that a future iPhone flagship might bring back Touch ID. But looks like I’ll have to wait some more time.

Until then, I’ll be using my banking apps on my Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and my other Android devices.

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