This year Apple introduced the 3D facial recognition technology with the iPhone X. While there have been mixed feelings about the level of security it provides, it seems Apple is working to improve the technology.
With iPhone X sports the technology at the front, new reports now suggest that Apple is now working on a rear-facing 3-D sensor system. This technology will basically be incorporated into the upcoming iPhone in 2019. Moreover, Apple might be heading towards making the new generation of iPhones more augmented-reality focused handset.
According to Bloomberg, the Cupertino based company is testing a different technology from the one used on the iPhone X (TrueDepth sensor system). Talking about the technology behind the existing system, the TrueDepth sensor basically depends on a structured-light technique. Meaning the sensor emits a pattern of 30,000 laser dots onto a user's face and captures as well as analyzes the distortion to generate an accurate 3-D image for authentication.
However, the report states that the rear-facing sensor would rely on a time-of-flight approach. Here the sensor will measure the time it takes for a laser to bounce off surrounding objects to create a three-dimensional picture of the environment.
The good news though, Apple will keep the TrueDepth system and what that means is that 2019 iPhones will have both front and rear-facing 3-D sensing capabilities.
According to Bloomberg's sources, Apple has begun contacting prospective suppliers for the new system. The publication also notes that the technology is in early testing stage and that it will take time to fully develop the technology and make it functional. Apple has not provided any statement regarding this case.