Apple's rumored off-axis light-based Touch ID system could make its way onto the iPhone 13, alongside Face ID
A patent filing with the US Patent and Trademark Office offers new insight into Apple's plans for Touch ID. The patent filing states that the fingerprint scanning technology will be based on "off-axis angular light. This is an evolution of the optical sensor approach that many Android smartphone makers are using right now.
Off-axis sensing would capture light from all angles. This would potentially increase the security of the Touch ID system and speed things up considerably, relative to existing under-display scanners. Interestingly, the patent indicates that the new Touch ID system will work in consonance with Face ID. This has interesting implications. Face ID, as it stands right now, offers reliable and secure access to iDevices.
A Touch ID option, however, could help in situations where users want to unlock their device when their face is obscured (such as when wearing a mask). Moreover, Touch ID and Face ID together could potentially offer added security through 2FA (two-factor authentication).
It's not clear whether or not Apple plans on introducing the new Touch ID sensors with the iPhone 13. We should hear more, however, in the months to come.
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