iPhone 6 Rumors, Release Date: New Facial Recognition Software Patented by Apple, Possibly for Phone

December 8, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

iPhone 6 rumors have suggested that the Apple smartphone might have a release date in late 2014, and some reports have said that Apple registered a patent for facial recognition software that could be used on the phone.

Unconfirmed reports say the phone might have a larger, curved display–with either 4.7-inch or 5.5-inch models. 

Apple Insider this week reported that Apple won a facial recognition patent for the iPhone 6, saying the patent entails “personal computing device control using face detection and recognition.” 

The facial recognition technology could be implemented on the phone by allowing users to unlock certain features with it, while keeping anyone who doesn’t have the same facial features out of the device.

“The device further includes a processor that detects one or more faces in the captured images, recognizes at least one of the captured faces as the face of the authorized user by comparing the one or faces with the data store, and controls the sending or receiving of a communication of the device in response to recognizing that at least one of the captured faces is the face of the authorized user,” reads part of the patent.

The same technology has been used in the Galaxy smartphones by Samsung, but Apple’s patent stipulates that the facial recognition also works in the background.

According to Venture Beat writer Devindra Hardawar, the patent has three systems, including “a face detection application, which lets it distinguish faces from their surroundings; a face recognition application, which identifies individual faces; and an input/output application, which will let Apple’s devices act on all the facial data.” 

The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One also use face recognition for their logins.

Bloomberg News reported last month that the new iPhone models will feature glass that bends downward toward the edges with better sensors.

Apple might also use a sapphire cover for the iPhone 6 fingerprint reader, Forbes reported.