Apple Builds Two-Year Technology Lead

Apple Builds Two-Year Technology Lead
Apple is two years ahead of its Android rivals in the development of 3D sensing technology, a report says.

(CCM) — Apple is so far ahead of Android smartphone makers in the development of the 3D sensing technology behind its FaceID security feature that it will take its rivals two years to catch up to where Apple is now, according to a Reuters report.

The technology enables the iPhone X owners to use the Face ID facial recognition system to unlock their phones, and it can also be used for gesture sensing, secure biometrics, and immersive gaming and augmented reality applications.

Research house Gartner predicts that 40% of all smartphones will use 3D sensing by 2021, but it will be 2019 at the earliest before vendors such as Samsung and Xiaomi are able to develop their own technologies and source the hardware required to make it work, according to the report.

"It is going to take them a lot of time, the Android-based customers, to secure capacity throughout the whole supply chain," Bill Ong, a director of Viavi, a 3D sensing hardware maker, told Reuters. "In 2019 you clearly will see at least two or more Android-based phones [using 3D sensing]," he added.

Apple was the first company to introduce a fingerprint reader on a phone when it launched its iPhone 5S in 2013, but the technology and hardware required to replicate this was relatively easy to acquire. For that reason companies such as Samsung were able to introduce competing phones with similar fingerprint readers in as little as seven months.

Image: © Apple.