Facial recognition unlocking for WhatsApp reaches beta test on Android
WhatsApp is beta testing facial recognition as a secure unlocking method for Android, Somag News reports, for smartphones with native face biometrics capabilities.
By enrolling their face biometrics with the app version 188.8.131.52, Android users can prevent other people from opening the application and viewing the messages it contains. The function will be provided from the same menu which currently offers fingerprint protection.
The ‘Fingerprint Lock’ option will be replaced by a ‘Biometric Lock’ function, according to images shared by WABetaInfo. The switch to ‘Biometric Lock’ also introduces the presentation of another unique identifier if the biometric attempt fails, the site says.
Biometric authentication for app locking and unlocking was launched to iOS in early-2019.
No timeline has been given for the feature’s rollout to general availability, but users who would like to enable the feature now can do so through the beta application available in the Play Store.
Android has been increasingly emphasizing facial recognition, adding non-alteration of facial appearance to preserve biometric functionality in camera APIs to compatibility criteria released in September.