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Apple Watch Owners Will Soon Be Able To Unlock Their iPhone Even If They Are Wearing A Mask

Mask wearing isn’t going away any time soon, which makes biometric authentication on recent iPhones almost unusable. If you own an Apple Watch, your troubles are over in iOS 14.5 beta, letting you use Face ID to get into your phone without touching the screen.

It’s the unlock routine extension that Apple already has for automatically unlocking your Mac using your Apple Watch. It turns on the screen to raise your iPhone, and you’ll get a haptic nudge on your Apple Watch to let you know your iPhone is unlocked.

For it to work, you’ll need your Apple Watch next to your iPhone, which shouldn’t be a concern if you’re actually wearing it. If your Apple Watch is closed, it also won’t work, nor will it work with purchases from the App Store or iTunes. If your face is hidden, you’ll still need your pin code to authorize those ones.

As another layer of protection to ensure your iPhone is only unlocked by the user, Apple will also enable you to enter your passcode every few hours. This is a good touch, striking a balance between safety and usability.

We’re going to have to see how well it performs in reality, as for some Mac users, the Apple Watch unlock for Mac was not accurate. Apple could go back to including Touch ID as a secondary biometric authentication tool, with an in-screen fingerprint reader, with COVID-19 looking to work in our lives for some time.

IOS 14.5’s beta also contains the transparency controls and pop-ups of the software that Facebook really, really hates, Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 controller support, some Siri changes, and 5G user dual-sim compatibility.

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