Friday, December 30th 2011

Apple Patents New Face-Recognition Device Unlock Technology

Some time in June 2010, Apple filed a patent application for a unique new facial-recognition technology that's light on the resources. It was discovered by AppleInsider. Entitled "Low Threshold Face Recognition," the application defines a method of recognizing a person using a front-facing camera of a device (could be anything from an iPhone, iPad, to even a Mac or Macbook), that consumes very little system resources, and is hence light on the device's power source.

It could very well be an evolution of the "Slide to Unlock" mechanism found on iOS devices, and conventional password entry to wake Macs up. If granted, this technology comes to being at a particularly important time, when a similar technology evolving out of Android Face Unlock, and when facial-recognition will be a key feature of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system, to log into systems and wake devices up from their e-slumbers. Apple's proposed technology relies on analyzing a "high information portion" portion of the human face, rather than using the conventional resource-heavy method of recognition. Apple claims its technology will be just as reliable.

Source: Apple Insider
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22 Comments on Apple Patents New Face-Recognition Device Unlock Technology

#1
Munki
I am interested (but only because I have a MB Pro) lol

I am excited for the uprising of facial recognition software.
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#2
v12dock
Despite Android and Microsoft having a working prototype. God apple the patent office needs to cut you off
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#3
mediasorcerer
This should be good for keeping an eye on everyone.
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#4
Over_Lord
News Editor
Isn't this a feature of ICS?

Does that mean that feature will go?

Sucks..
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#5
buggalugs
What if you have an evil twin?:D
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#6
qwerty_lesh
by: thunderising
Isn't this a feature of ICS?

Does that mean that feature will go?

Sucks..
same sort of feature, but different technique, I dont think they're trying to broadly patent face unlock because they wouldn't have a hope in hell. but whatever algorithm they've created that makes it so non resource intensive is the key thing about the patent they're probably trying to prevent from being plagiarized.

tldr.. herpa derpa MS and Googul did duns do dat first
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#7
Shihabyooo
So am I to assume -from the pic- that it's using downsampled orange hue filtered images to detect faces ? Why do I get the feeling we're about to witness another Kinect-ish fail ?
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#8
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
by: Munki
I am excited for the uprising of facial recognition software.
I'm not because if it doesn't work 100% of the time, it is a failure.
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#9
Fourstaff
Insert comment about the rich stupid woman trying to use her phone after extensive plastic surgery.
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#10
EnergyFX
by: Fourstaff
Insert comment about the rich stupid woman trying to use her phone after extensive plastic surgery.
lol, and what if you need to call 911 after someone/thing broke your face?
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#11
Fourstaff
by: EnergyFX
lol, and what if you need to call 911 after someone/thing broke your face?
Serves you right for buying iDevice :)

/sarcasm
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#13
Wrigleyvillain
PTFO or GTFO
iJoke all you want and grumble about all the patents but stuff like this (and what Siri will eventually become) will all be future standard features on mobile devices. I applaud Apple for their innovation and inventiveness and if it was some smaller hot shit start up developing these things and applying for all these patents everyone would think it was awesome.
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#14
Fourstaff
by: Wrigleyvillain
iJoke all you want and grumble about all the patents but stuff like this (and what Siri will eventually become) will all be future standard features on mobile devices. I applaud Apple for their innovation and inventiveness and if it was some smaller hot shit start up developing these things and applying for all these patents everyone would think it was awesome.
I personally think Apple is a good company for innovation, but on the other hand I like to make fun of them too :D
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#15
Steevo
Its not innovation if its patent trolling and generic bullshit like this that someone else has already done.
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#16
yogurt_21
by: btarunr
Apple claims its technology will be just as reliable.
sweet so we can count on being able to unlock iphones with pictures as well. Score one for the phone thieves.
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#17
WarraWarra
Isn't Apple a bit late with this, maybe the low power might make a difference.

So why are you guys with Asus laptops not using your "Smart Logon Manager" utility to use your face to login to win7. Same thing just on Asus not on Apple.
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#18
craigo
+1 for apple being late with this.
I have not personally seen the Asus or Toshiba implementation but my Alienware laptop uses face recognition biometrics via a utility called Facap.
Pretty sure it is Ricoh hardware will power it on later and check.
The m17x in question predates the patent application filed by Apple.
I think Dell,Asus,Toshiba or the camera hardware manufacturers who likely hold the true patents for this technology should step in about now.
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#19
Solaris17
Creator Solaris Utility DVD
do billion dollar companies SERIOUSLY submit stick figure drawings of technological ideas to the patent office? Are they like 6? fischer price should sue them.
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#20
craigo
by: Solaris17
do billion dollar companies SERIOUSLY submit stick figure drawings of technological ideas to the patent office? Are they like 6? fischer price should sue them.
Speculative I know,
But i cannot shake the feeling that Apples Patent submission is simple by design and Apple will proceed to litigate against all that implement facial biometrics
From this point forward this sets them up to claim ownership and command royalties from an already prevalent technology.
Ethics nor fact seem to have no bearing over Apples litigation of late, Look at the Apple/Samsung debacle.
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#21
DrPepper
The Doctor is in the house
by: FordGT90Concept
I'm not because if it doesn't work 100% of the time, it is a failure.
Can't think of anything that works 100% of the time.
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#22
Scrizz
remember the face unlock thing on Lenovos back when Vista was out.....
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