The next-generation iPhone 8, set to debut this September, could include facial or gesture recognition technology, according to Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Arcuri. The facial recognition capabilities could be powered by a laser sensor and an infrared sensor located near the front-facing camera.
We’ve previously heard rumors suggesting the iPhone 8 could include advanced biometric features like facial recognition or iris scanning, both from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chu Kuo and from details sourced from the Asian supply chain.
With facial recognition, Apple could replace the Touch ID fingerprint sensor in the iPhone or augment its functionality with a two-factor verification system for sensitive information. In this scenario, unlocking the iPhone would require users to scan their faces, something that would increase security on iOS devices.
Facial recognition could also power other features on the phone, like augmented reality camera functions, and while gesture recognition is a new rumor, it could allow users to control their devices with simple gestures for doing things like turning volume up or down.
Capabilities like gesture control and facial recognition are also some of the first steps towards a rich augmented reality experience, something Apple is rumored to be working on.
Arcuri also reiterates several rumors we’ve previously heard. He believes Apple will launch a total of three iPhones, the standard 4.7 and 5.5-inch models and a new higher-end 5.8-inch iPhone with an OLED display.
The 5.8-inch iPhone, he says, will feature a wraparound display and a Touch ID fingerprint sensor that is located under the glass, a technology Apple has been pursuing for some time. Wireless charging, a much-rumored and highly desired feature, is also expected.
Today’s report from Timothy Arcuri covers many rumors that have been circulating for a few months, which is similar to much of the information that comes from the analyst. Cowen and Company has something of a mixed track record, but accurately predicted some iPhone 7 features.