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Apple rumored to be considering Face ID biometrics for next macOS


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Apple fans may sooner rather than later be able to use their face biometrics to unlock computers, as 9 to 5 Mac has come across hints that the tech giant may introduce biometric facial recognition by installing TrueDepth cameras on machines running macOS Big Sur.

The publication claims it found a new extension on macOS Big Sur beta 3 with “PearlCamera” support, which is the alleged codename for the TrueDepth camera and Face ID, according to 2017 leaks. Other codes named include “FaceDetect” and “BioCapture,” hinting that Apple is considering adding Face ID to macOS, although development has not gone too far.

Keyboards on MacBook Air and MacBook Pro are already equipped with Touch ID biometric fingerprint authentication that uses a T2 security chip. Face ID would be an additional feature for easier and faster unlocking, which would also fit well with a keyboard-less iMac. Face ID uses neural technology and machine learning to analyze facial features, but neural engines are not currently available on Macs.

This year, Apple is replacing Intel processors with Apple Silicon chips to ensure Macs benefit from the neural engine already available on iPhones and iPads. Although not many details have been made available, 9 to 5 Mac says the TrueDepth camera will support Memojis and augmented reality apps. By the end of the year, the company is expected to launch Apple Silicon Macs.

Apple has just received a patent for an advanced Face ID feature called “Evil Twin Proof,” which uses subepidermal imaging and face vein matching to improve biometric authentication. The company has also been looking into technology to replace physical passports, driver’s licenses and any physical IDs with devices like the iPhone.

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