Amid rumors that the iPhone 8 will incorporate advanced facial recognition features, the Hebrew-language website Calcalist (via Times of Israel) is reporting that Apple recently acquired Realface, an up-and-coming Israeli startup with impressive real-time facial recognition software. Lending credence to rumors that the iPhone 8 may forgo the use of Touch ID in favor of facial recognition, Realface's software is said to be sophisticated enough such that it can reliably be used as a foundation for mobile-based biometric authentication. As is often the case when Apple acquires a company, Realface's web presence has already been wiped from the web. Still, thanks to the magic of Google, we were able to poke around and dig up some intriguing nuggets of information about the company's promising technology. Realface boasts that it's AI software rests upon deep learning methods and is so reliable and quick that the end-result is an absolutely seamless user experience.
Apple has acquired Tel Aviv, Israel-based Realface, a machine learning startup whose facial recognition technology can be used to authenticate users, according to reports from Calcalist (in Hebrew) and The Times Of Israel. Founded in 2014, RealFace says it has developed an innovative way of recognising people, self-reportedly building A.I software that "brings back human perception to digital process". RealFace's software enables authentication, automated on-boarding & mobile conversion optimisation. The company, led by co-founder and Columbia Business School-trained Adi Eckhouse Barzilai, says it has proprietary IP in the field of'frictionless face recognition' and effective learnings from facial features. The Israeli startup is behind the Pickeez app, which automatically choses a user's best photos from various platforms using the RealFace recognition software.
While Samsung debuted the now defunct Galaxy Note 7 with an iris scanner, Apple is skipping the eye-scanning technology for a more advanced biometrics security feature with its next-generation iPhone. Late last week, we reported about a 3D laser scanner that's predicted to be one of the standout features of the 10th anniversary iPhone. This week, there's now another reason to believe that the iPhone 8 could indeed come with the rumored 3D scanner. Just this past Sunday, The Times of Israel reported that a Tel Aviv, Israel-based cybertechnology startup was acquired by U.S. giant Apple Inc. The publication learned that the Israeli company, named RealFace, was established in 2014, and it is known for developing an advanced facial recognition software that provides a smart biometric login solution.
With good reason, the most anticipated feature the iPhone 8 will bring to the table is a radical new redesign featuring an edge to edge OLED display. But with the iPhone 8 display hogging the headlines, it's easy to forget that Apple's next-gen iPhone will bring a lot of compelling features to the table, including advanced 3D sensors capable of best-in-class facial recognition. Echoing previous reports, The Korea Herald reports that LG Innotek has been tapped to supply the iPhone 8's 3D camera sensors. The report said the company's new facility investment worth 269.7 billion won (US$238.50 million) that was announced on April 27 will be dedicated to Apple's orders. The initial deal size is estimated at about 200 billion won.
Those rumors of Apple exploring facial recognition for sign-ins might just have some merit. Calcalist reports that Apple has acquired RealFace, an Israeli startup that developed deep learning-based face authentication technology. The terms of the deal aren't public, but it's estimated at "several million dollars." Cupertino would mainly be interested in the promise of the technology than pure resources, in other words. We've reached out to Apple for comment on the reported deal and will let you know if it has something to add.