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Apple Mixed Reality Headset To Use Iris Scanning for Payments, Logging In

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Apple’s mixed reality headset is rumored to use iris scanning for signing in and making payments setting itself apart from Meta’s new Quest Pro headset, according to a paywalled report from The Information. This would work like Apple’s fingerprint feature or Face ID authentication, allowing multiple people to use one headset. 

Two individuals, apparently involved in developing Apple’s headset, told The Information that users will be able to scan their irises to quickly log into their accounts and make payments, similar to Face ID and Touch ID – a feature first rumored by Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted last year that the mixed reality headset could support iris recognition. The eye tracking system is said to feature a transmitter and receiver that can analyze eye movements.

As per a report by The Information, Apple’s virtual and augmented reality headset will use iris scanning to authenticate payments and log users into their accounts. The iris recognition technology will make it easier for multiple people to use the same device and allow them to quickly make payments from inside the headset, just as iPhone models allow people to confirm payments using scans of their fingerprint or face, the report adds citing two employees.

The eye-scanning system could work similarly to Apple’s fingerprint or Face ID functionality. If the report turns out to be correct, then the presence of the new eye-scanning system would be an advantage over Meta’s just-announced Quest Pro headset.

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To enable iris scanning, internal cameras track where users are looking. Eye tracking also allows Apple to reduce graphical fidelity in a user’s peripheral vision, thereby reducing the amount of processing power required for the headset’s graphics. Apple’s purchase of German startup SensoMotoric Instruments in 2017 is said to have allowed it to build the technology.

Apple will reportedly use the headset’s cameras for iris scanning. The upcoming device could be made from mesh fabrics, aluminum, and glass, and is said to have a goggle-like design. Apple’s headset will be lighter than the Quest Pro. Further, the report claims that the headset allows prescription lenses to be magnetically attached inside the headset.

Last year, analysts Ming-Chi Kuo also claimed that Apple’s mixed reality headset will come with an advanced eye-tracking system with a transmitter and a receiver. The receiver judges the eyeball movement based on the change while the transmitting end provides different wavelengths of invisible light, as per Kuo. This would allow for a more intuitive way to use Apple Pay, he added.

The device is expected to launch early in 2023. The headset is said to feature 14 cameras, compared to just 10 on Meta’s Quest Pro headset, designed to capture motion to accurately represent real-world movements on digital avatars. Two downward-facing cameras apparently capture the wearer’s legs, offering another feature that the Quest Pro does not have. Apple’s headset is said to use its M2 processor with 16GB of memory for the mixed-reality headset. It could allow users to view certain invisible things. Users might be able to see gas leaks and Wi-Fi signals through the device.

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