Apple is making iPhones easier to unlock without Face ID while many wear masks



Angela Lang/CNET

Apple has included a new feature in iOS 13.5 developer beta 3 so users can unlock their iPhones faster while wearing a medical mask or facial covering due to COVID-19 measures. While not mentioned in the iOS release notes published Wednesday, the Face ID changes make it simpler and faster to get to the passcode field by swiping up from the bottom of the lock screen on your iPhone.

This will work not only for unlocking the phone but also for authenticating purchases, including in the App Store, Apple Books, Apple Pay and iTunes, and while using apps that need Face ID authentication.

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No information yet on when this feature will be released to the public, however.

Also as part of that beta, Apple delivered its first tools for coronavirus tracking technology alongside Google. The new Exposure Notification API will support public health authority COVID-19 apps. The software will be fully released in mid-May.


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