A newly uncovered Apple patent application for a new facial recognition technology might let you unlock your device or wake it up from sleep mode simply by putting your face in front of it.
A patent titled “Low Threshold Face Recognition” could potentially work with all of Apple’s products, including the iPhone, iPad, iTouch, MacBook, and even an iMac. The patent would work with each product’s existing FaceTime camera to detect its user’s presence — even while it’s asleep.
This new patent takes things a step further than other facial recognition software by letting users customize its settings, so that multiple users and their device settings, wallpaper, etc. will be automatically configured based purely on the device recognizing their face.
It’s anybody’s guess as to when (or if) Cupertino engineers might implement this technology in Apple devices. It does seem like a perfect fit for Steve Jobs’ minimalist approach to computer use, so I’ll be surprised if this one never sees the light of day.