Apple patent filing describes face biometrics to adjust display for glasses
A pair of updates to Face ID will allow the feature to work on more repaired phones and could soon bring multiple user biometric profiles to Apple devices.
A newly-published patent application from the tech giant, spotted by Patently Apple, describes the display of graphical outputs being personalized based on the vision of the person looking at them through multiple biometric profiles for the same user. This could mean adjusting graphical output based on whether or not the user is wearing their glasses, but could also mean a series of “biometric identity maps” for the same user with a fresh shave or a five o’clock shadow, or wearing sunglasses, possibly enrolled after the user verifies their identity such as by entering a password.
Various “vision-corrected graphical output” methods are also detailed in the filing.
‘Systems and Methods for Switching Vision Correction Graphical Outputs on a Display of an Electronic Device’ also introduces the notion of ‘privacy eyewear,’ through which the user reads content rendered blurry to other people to prevent shoulder-surfing and other potential privacy violations.
The company also recently had a patent for face biometrics that work for people wearing masks granted.
Course reverse on blatant anti-competitive tactic
Apple has also told The Verge it is preparing a software update to allow Face ID biometrics to operate on iPhones with repaired screens.
So far, the face biometrics feature stops working on iPhone 13 models that have their screen replaced, unless a tiny control chip embedded in the original screen was also moved over, or a software tool distributed to Apple-authorized repair shops is used.
The Verge reports that moving the chip over to the new screen is challenging and time-consuming, likely to the extent of being prohibitive for independent repair shops.
No date was specified for the software update.
Pixel 6 to get face biometrics after all?
When the new version of Google’s flagship Pixel smartphone was unveiled, it was surprising to some that it did not include facial authentication for secure unlocking.
Now XDA Developers reports that a close examination of source code in a Pixel 6 commit dump shows a nascent biometric face unlock feature referred to as ‘Tuscany.’
The feature could potentially be added to the Pixel 6’s under-display fingerprint biometrics, which have been criticized for slow performance with a future software update.
This post was updated at 2:03pm Eastern on November 13, 2021 to give Patently Apple credit for spotting the published patent application.