One of the most symbolic features of Apple’s anniversary iPhone, the iPhone X, is definitely the notch that holds the advanced 3D face mapping technology. Often people oversimplify it to “face unlock” or “something like an iris scanner”, but truth be told, 3D mapping is a mile Advanced compared to the usual security options related to facial recognition we could find on phones. Of course, Apple focused more on the thing that you can animate (crap) emojis with it, than what the real deal behind the tech is, and why the company decided to ruin a perfectly working UI design (and the looks of the phone) for it.
At the end of the day, considering how an average customer will use the iPhone X, the advanced 3D face mapping technology will mostly be used for unlocking the phone. Face unlock, that works by using a camera to take a picture of the user’s face, is present on Android devices for years, and a more secure option, the iris scanner, was debuted in 2015 with Microsoft Lumia 950 and 950XL. The thing is, all of those ways of unlocking have a workflow – recognize the user based on his facial features and unlock the device. You could do the same with your €100 Nokia phone. Here’s how.
A tutorial on XDA forums appeared that describes how to port “face unlock” feature from the newly announced OnePlus 5T to every Android device running Nougat and above. The feature is described as follows:
The OnePlus 5T was just released, and it’s packing several new useful features. While many OnePlus 5 buyers are feeling frustrated with the quick release cycle, lots of fans are still clamoring to buy the new device. Aside from the larger screen, most of the buzz around the 5T has centered around the new face unlock method. Thanks to a clever hack, you can now get this feature on almost any phone!
In addition to being extremely accurate, the new method speeds up the overall unlocking process. Google already built face unlocking into the Smart Lock feature of Android, but it has a significant drawback: When using Smart Lock’s version of facial recognition, users must swipe up on the lock screen after the phone is unlocked. Similar to Apple’s Face ID setup, this is an annoying and unnecessary step that companies like Samsung and LG have already done away with in their recognition algorithms. Luckily, it’s incredibly quick and easy to enable the OnePlus 5T’s lock screen bypass method.
We tried installing it on our Nokia 5, and it works perfectly. I was surprised how good it was, even in lower light conditions (but not too low light or dark) and with or without glasses. The unlocking takes about a second or two (or a little more, depending how fast does it recognize the face), and you can see the “lock” indicator above the fingerprint scanner changing to a face when the phone unlocks. You need to set up a PIN or Pattern to enable the smart lock feature that allows face unlock. If you set up “fingerprint” as the method to unlock, the phone will use your finger if you press the sensor to unlock the device, and it will use your face if you press the power button. Would be cool if a “2-stage” verification could take place, where the device simultaneously checks your fingerprint and face for unlocking. Check a short video demo down below.
To install the face unlock feature head to XDA and follow the really simple install instructions. Also, I was joking a little in the title, but considering you can install face unlock on a device €1000 cheaper than the iPhone X, whose signature feature (one of, at least) is “FaceID”, you could save a lot of money if you want a device with face unlock. 🙂 If you’re more into video tutorials, down below you can find the original tutorial to install this feature.