Yes, we know that Apple didn’t invent the fingerprint scanner, nor was the company first at deploying it on mobile phones, but it’s hard to deny that Cupertino did it best with the iPhone 5s. Today Touch ID has become so fast and practical that we even complain of its crazy speed at unlocking your iPhone 6s. Still, Touch ID is about more than just unlocking your phone, and a new Apple patent proves that.
Apple has just filed a new patent called Fingerprint activation of a panic mode of operation for a mobile device, and the idea here is to give users an nifty way to protect their personal information and even call for help when feeling threatened. The way it works is that within iOS, the user will set a finger as the panic mode trigger, meaning registering a finger that the user wouldn’t normally use to unlock the iPhone. Given the recent kill switch laws, thieves have come to the point of demanding that a user unlocks the phone and removes the “Find my iPhone” feature before running away. This patented trick would allow a user to comply, but it would protect all personal data, call for help, and even take photos of the subject and store them securely on iCloud.
Sadly it won’t stop iPhone theft since the next trick will be for the burglar to request that the phone be unlocked by other means, or even wear a mask, but hey, it’s a step in the right direction.