Apple has released detailed information on how its new Face ID system works. The facial recognition tech, a cornerstone of the soon–to–be–released iPhone X, has been lauded for its security prowess.
However, having failed to work properly during Apple’s launch event, it’s now becoming clearer when and how it could be gamed by hackers.
Here are the key reasons why Apple’s headline–grabbing new feature might not work for everyone.
1) You’re under 13
As unlikely as it is that pre–teens will get their mitts on a smartphone that starts at £999 SIM–free, Apple says that younger users should avoid using Face ID as it’s harder for its tech to distinguish between them and other, similarly–aged users
This is “...because their distinct facial features may not have fully developed.”
2) You’ve got a twin
Yes, the idea of an evil twin taking your iPhone X, unlocking it and using it for nefarious deeds might sound like the storyline from a particularly naff soap opera.
But Apple says that those with twins or similar looking siblings should avoid Face ID for security purposes.
While it doesn’t say what the chances are that evil family members could unlock your phone, it’s sure to be much more likely than the one in a million chance of a random person opening an iPhone X with their face.
3) Your hat, glasses or scarves work with infrared
Face ID uses infrared tech to scan and detect faces. But while Apple says the iPhone X can suss out who you are even when wearing a hat, glasses, a scarf covering your face, or even sunglasses, there are caveats.
Whatever you’re wearing must be transparent to infrared, with the cameras being able to see your eyes, nose and mouth. Expect this to be tested heavily when the first iPhone X review units are out next month.
4) You have a shave
Got a thick beard? Can’t face the itchiness any longer? Well, if you shave it off, expect Face ID to notice. It’ll ask you to enter a passcode and then tweak its data by scanning your face again to ensure its image is up to date.
5) You’ve just turned your phone on
As with existing Touch ID–based iPhones, Face ID will not work when the iPhone X has just been turned on. You’ll need to enter a passcode to unlock your device.
The same goes after using the power off or Emergency SOS function when pressing the volume and side keys simultaneously.