Following on from their acquisition of Polar Rose, a face detection software company, Apple is reportedly going to have a strong focus on facial detection technology in iOS 5, according to 9to5Mac. The site reveals that face detection APIs are being included in the new iOS 5 operating system for the iPod Touch, iPad and iPhone and, as such, allow developers to use the advanced facial detection technology in their own apps.
Obviously, Apple has already implemented facial recognition to some degree as demonstrated by the funky effects that are included with the application Photo Booth for the Mac. The report dissects the APIs that could potentially be used and they include the ability to identify the position of the eyes and mouth and therefore could potentially be used to implement the features in their own iOS application.
Taking it one step further, Apple could decide to implement more uses of facial recognition technology and use it for differential user recognition. If a device could recognise the face of the person that is using the device, then customized settings could be applied. This would be much like the facial recognition technology used in iPhoto but could have some interesting applications in other areas.