Apple’s WWDC23 was a huge success! The much-awaited 15-inch MacBook Air debuted alongside the long-rumored Vision Pro, the company’s first AR glasses. But there’s more than meets the eye, like literally. With the release of the Vision Pro headset, Apple is taking a fresh look at how users may protect their data and personal information. Here’s what you need to know about Apple’s Optic ID.
The Optic ID technology, which has been believed to be used by the mixed reality gadget, will study your irises using invisible LED light exposures and match them to your enrolled eye data in order to sign you in. It can be used as a substitute for a password when making App Store or Apple Pay transactions.
The Vision Pro headset has both Optic ID and additional privacy safeguards. Eye-tracking data will be kept private and will not be available to Apple or anyone else. The tech giant emphasizes that the headset’s Secure Enclave encrypts and isolates your ocular data. It is not accessible to apps and never leaves the device. There will be no photos or other methods for hackers to use the raw data, just like with Face ID and Touch ID.
The use of iris scanning as a security measure is not novel. For instance, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 was the first smartphone to provide iris sign-in. Although this is a unique feature for headsets, it might be helpful if you prefer not to use a keyboard (physical or digital) when you first turn on your headset or launch a particular program.
Applications will not be able to sneak a peek at your environment in order to enable spatial functionality; this processing of camera and sensor data occurs at the system level. And if you’re taking pictures or video, a visible sign will let folks know. You probably won’t face a backlash like that experienced by Google Glass.
Apple views the Vision Pro as the beginning of a “spatial computing” platform where you can spend hours in mixed reality, and features like Optic ID might make that platform more appealing to consumers.