The Coronavirus outbreak in China that has spread across the country and abroad has created massive havoc all around the world. This has led to a surge in demand for face masks to protect people from getting infected. So much so that the factories in China have reportedly asked their production lines to turn in more masks in an effort to keep up with the growing demand.
And while wearing a face mask may help protect you from catching the deadly virus, it wouldn’t quite let you use face unlock on your smartphone. The feature is available on most of the major mobile devices and has become a primary way to secure smartphones for many users. However, the function would not work when you have a large section of your face covered.
Interestingly, a San Francisco-based design firm has come up with a clever, albeit ridiculous solution of sorts, printing your face on an N95 surgical mask. The service prints the user’s face on this mask to allow them to theoretically unlock their phone. The user simply needs to upload a picture of their face with the help of the Face ID Masks web application and tweak it to fix the alignment before getting the final product.
Made this service that prints your face on an N95 mask, so you can protect people from viral epidemics while still being able to unlock your phone.— Danielle Baskin (@djbaskin) February 15, 2020
Unfortunately, it does not support smartphones that use 3D face unlock to unlock the device. This means that it wouldn’t work on a Google Pixel 4, Huawei Mate 30 Pro, or iPhone X and the likes.
According to a report from Android Authority, designer and artist Danielle Baskin who has designed the concept has stated that she is working on a new mask that will support depth sensors used for 3D face unlock. The report also added that she hopes to have the new mask ready in the next few months.
When asked about camera-based face unlock, Baskin explained that it wouldn’t pass since the alignment may not be a 100% perfect match to an individual’s actual face. She also added that users will need to register it as an additional face and that adding that compatibility with camera-based face unlock is still in testing.