Apple is indeed planning to bring facial recognition to the next iPhone, and LG Innotek is providing some critical hardware, reports the Korea Economic Daily.
LG’s parts division has been tapped to provide a specialized camera designed for three-dimensional facial imaging. A new, nearly $240 million production facility will be dedicated to the effort.
As Patently Apple points out, the effort seems to be the culmination of various investments that Apple has made in facial recognition technology and companies, including its recent acquisition of Israel-based specialist RealFace. It could help to give the iPhone 8 a competitive edge against Samsung’s Galaxy S8, which features both iris and facial recognition, but uses only two-dimensional imaging for the latter, which Samsung does not purport to be effective enough to enable secure user authentication on its own.
Of course, the threat of a production delay still looms, with recent reports suggesting that Apple is tripping up over the challenge of integrating its Touch ID fingerprint scanning system into the device’s display.