For a while now, we’ve known that Apple’s supply chain has been struggling to manufacture Face ID components. Because of this, the company has been unable to produce the number of iPhone X units it will need to meet demand. iPhone X may be incredibly hard to find until 2018, but a new report gives us insight as to what Apple is doing to improve supply chain manufacturing of the iPhone X.
According to a new report from Bloomberg, Apple has lowered the specifications for its Face ID components. This in turn will allow supply chain to manufacture the iPhone X faster. “It quietly told suppliers they could reduce the accuracy of the face-recognition technology to make it easier to manufacture,” says Bloomberg. At the heart of the issue is the Face ID’s dot projector, the hardware unit that emits 30,000 infrared beams into a face.
This new reduction in accuracy seems to have taken place around the time of iPhone X unveiling event last month, but Bloomberg says “early fall.” How will the Face ID perform now? Well, Apple has praised Face ID’s accuracy being 1,000,000:1, compared to 50,000:1 for Touch ID. Even after the reduction in accuracy, the company can still claim Face ID being more accurate than Touch ID.
This reduction in accuracy will allow Apple to produce parts faster, but Bloomberg says it’s not clear how this will affect Face ID use in real life use. Even after the reduction, if Face ID performs well, this will be a good win for Apple as it will not see a reduction in performance for the feature, as well as be able to meet demand.