iPhone update lets users with masks unlock phones with Face ID: How to do it

iPhone update lets users with masks unlock phones with Face ID: How to do it

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(NEXSTAR) – After two long years of a global pandemic, Apple is finally making it easier for people wearing masks to unlock their iPhones.

As part of the iOS 15.4 update, Apple has launched a new “Face ID with a Mask” option for iPhone models 12 and later. The new feature will now allow users to unlock their mobile devices while wearing masks or face coverings, saving them the hassle of entering their passcodes, pulling down the masks or using Apple Watches to bypass the process.

The update will also allow masked users to access Apple Pay or authorize apps that require Face ID.

To set up the new feature, users need to open Settings and select Face ID & Passcode before turning on the “Face ID with a Mask” option. On the setup screen, users are asked to remove their masks so the device can better recognize the “unique features around the eye area.”

“You must look at your phone to use Face ID while wearing a mask,” the instructions explain.

Once setup is complete, users who wear glasses can choose to further adjust accuracy by tapping “Add Glasses” on the Face ID & Passcode screen.

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However, Apple has warned that users who “wear a face mask too high or too close” to their eyes may still have problems unlocking their phones once setup is complete. (“This feature requires your eyes to be raised,” the company said.)

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Apple has previously tried to make it easy, or at least less problematic, for users to unlock their iPhones in places where masks were required. The iOS 31.5 update, released in 2020, sped up access to the password screen for users with masks. And in 2021, the iOS 14.5 update allowed masked users to unlock their phones if they were also wearing an unlocked Apple Watch.

In addition to the latest Face ID option, this week’s iOS 15.4 update also includes dozens of new emoji and an additional voice for Siri, among other features and bug fixes.

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