Well, Apple is back at it again. After introducing the 3D image sensing and scanning to make the iPhone secure than the touch ID, they’ve got something else for us now. Apple’s Face ID could become even more secure in the future. iPhone X producer has explored the possibility of scanning the pattern of veins in a user’s face as another form of biometric authentication.
Whats special about this one? This type of biometric including the arrangement of veins in one’s face has the potential to tell twins apart which was not so efficient in the Face ID in iPhone X.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published a patent on Tuesday called “Vein imaging using detection of pulsed radiation,” granted to Apple. The company first applied for the patent on November 12, 2015, but it wasn’t until Tuesday that the U.S. Patent and Trademark office published that it had been granted.
The system consists of an optical transmitter that emits multiple pulses of infrared light towards an area of the user’s body, such as a hand or a face. The infrared light can pass through the skin and reflect off the user’s veins, with returning light received by an image capturing device capable of accepting IR light. The data generated by the reflected IR light is then processed to generate an image of the blood vessels within the defined area. Based on the time-of-flight of the pulses, this technique could also be used to generate a three-dimensional map of the body surface.
Apple in the patent wrote how vein-based authentication systems for hands are considered to be very accurate “due to the complexity of the vein patterns in the hand.” Apple notes existing As said vein patterns are internal to the body, it would be extremely difficult for someone to produce a usable counterfeit, touting it as one of the most secure and efficient biometric identification till date. Also, as vein imaging is also contactless, it also “alleviates hygienic concerns” associated with other systems that use fingerprints or handprints where there was an existing issue regarding how the prints couldn’t work as the hand was dusty or sticky.
The latest and alleged Vein-based authentication would potentially help Face ID from solving its “twin problem” if the two systems were used together. With Apple itself suggesting there could be issues with identical twins or family members that are visually similar to each other.
This authentication would also solve the problem where people thought of bypassing the Face ID by wearing masks. But now as the ID requires scanning of a person’s vein, it becomes a lot more difficult and complex to carry out. The inventors of the patent are listed as Andrew T, Herrington, Jawad Nawasra, and Scott T. Smith.
Now that’s innovation from Apple. Let’s see how long does it take for the tech giant to implement this feature in their next flagship.