Touch ID was and remains typical Apple; a blissful marriage of security and convenience. Nobody can steal your fingerprint. It isn’t easy to cheat. A finger touch opens your iPhone or iPad (and now certain Macs). Security and convenience work so well that Google and Samsung still can’t do it.
Haters Gonna Cheat
As good as Touch ID remains, Apple thinks Face ID, the company’s facial recognition system, is better. You see it on all new iPhones and new iPad Pro models. Convenience, meet security.
Now, to be fair, fingerprint scanners and facial recognition systems are nothing new. Apple didn’t invent either one. What Apple did was make each one work the way it should.
How about the competition? It’s a different kind of relationship; one that marries occasional convenience with the imagination of security and the reality of fear.
Google’s new Pixel 4 doesn’t use a fingerprint scanner. Instead, Pixel 4 has a facial recognition system, too. Antonio Villas-Boas explains how it works:
The facial recognition on Google’s new Pixel 4 can be fooled by a twin or unlocked by someone else while you’re asleep
That doesn’t sound all that secure. How does Apple handle closed eyes?
Face ID has a feature called “Attention Aware” that prevent iPhones from being unlocked when your eyes are closed. It’s more secure, but it makes the iPhone harder to unlock using Face ID.
Oh, so Face ID is not easily fooled. Google’s Pixel 4 is. Got it.
What about Samsung’s popular Galaxy models? Most tech critics and customers know the facial recognition system is lame, but thankfully Galaxy S10 has a fingerprint scanner, too– and it’s built right into the display.
See? Convenience just married security.
Ron Amadeo explains:
Samsung is once again in hot water for a shoddy biometrics implementation. This time the culprit is the Galaxy S10 and its ultrasonic in-screen fingerprint reader, which apparently can be unlocked by anyone as long as there is a screen protector or some other piece of transparent plastic between a finger and the sensor.
Stick on a crummy screen protector and all that security you thought you had is gone.
Don’t worry, though. As it is with everything Android, it’ll get fixed in a future update. Or, maybe in next year’s phones.