Face ID vs Touch ID

Mac Format - - FEATURE -

We got our first taste of Touch ID in 2013’s iPhone 5s, giving us a su­per­se­cure way to un­lock

our iPhones. All you need to do is press your fin­ger onto the Home but­ton and it’ll open up your iPhone – sim­ple as that.

Ap­ple re­leased a faster sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion ver­sion of Touch ID two years later with the iPhone 6s, and ported the func­tion­al­ity to the MacBook Pro along­side the Touch Bar in 2016.

Still, Ap­ple be­ing Ap­ple, it has felt that it could do bet­ter than Touch ID. While the fea­ture made it into the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, the flag­ship iPhone X got some­thing new and shiny: Face ID.

Face value

Ap­ple claimed dur­ing the iPhone X launch event that there was a one in 50,000 chance of Touch ID be­ing tricked by an im­poster. Face ID, on the other hand, only has a one in a mil­lion chance of be­ing spoofed.

So how ex­actly does it work? Well, the up­graded front-fac­ing TrueDepth cam­era scans your face and maps 30,000 tiny dots onto it to cre­ate a ‘pre­cise depth map of your face’. Then all you need to do is look at your iPhone and it’ll un­lock. It’ll recog­nise you even if you put on a hat, grow a beard or change your hair­style. Pretty clever stuff.

So, is it worth up­grad­ing just for the Face ID fac­tor? No, we don’t think so. Touch ID is al­ready ex­tremely safe, stor­ing your fin­ger­print de­tails in a se­cure en­clave on your iPhone, which makes it very dif­fi­cult for im­posters to in­ter­cept your data. If you’re al­ready go­ing to get the iPhone X any­way, then you’ll get to enjoy the new Face ID func­tion­al­ity, but don’t make it the sole rea­son you up­grade.

Fin­ger­prints are so passé now, Face ID is the new way to get in!

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