Arguably, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 deserves an A+ on all accounts, particularly for its Quad HD+ Super AMOLED display. Almost.
From the look of things, the South Korean brand didn't exactly manage to cram in a secure facial recognition lock into its flagship, or in other words, it can be easily tricked.
Galaxy Note 8 Doesn't Recognize Faces Well
Web developer Mel Tajon or @MelTajon put the Galaxy Note 8's facial recognition technology to the test with a demo unit at Best Buy, finding out that no one has to break a sweat to deceive it with a flat photo.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Facial Recognition Test: pic.twitter.com/dVooMPMgfh
— Mel Tajon (@MelTajon) September 2, 2017
What this tells us is simple: Don't rely on the Galaxy Note 8's facial recognition prowess to keep it secured from prying eyes. In other words, it's safer to stick with PIN, the fingerprint sensor, or the iris scanner.
Galaxy Note 8's Facial Recognition Technology Is Not For Security
Samsung isn't saying that this simple circumvention is a flaw at all either. According to CNET, the company told it that it's just a convenient way to unlock the Galaxy Note 8.
"It is important to reiterate that facial recognition, while convenient, can only be used for opening your Galaxy S8 and currently cannot be used to authenticate access to Samsung Pay or Secure Folder," Samsung told the news outlet.
That's all fine and well, but in Tajon's video, the Galaxy Note 8 clearly says that facial recognition is "easier and more secure than using your PIN." Needless to say, that definitely doesn't coincide with Samsung's statement, or put simply, it's a tad misleading.
At any rate, in Samsung's defense, Tajon does say that this disappointing performance may not indicative of what users will get — that is, if the company plans on making it a security feature rather than a touch of convenience. However, at this point, that's still just a big "if."
Is it possible the demo is not reflective of actual software? Absolutely. And I’d love to see vids by others proving/disproving my test. — Mel Tajon (@MelTajon) September 6, 2017
iPhone 8 To Blow The Competition Out Of The Water
The Galaxy Note 8's facial recognition could be considered a foretelling of how far the technology for mobile devices has come so far, and Tajon's example may have shown the extent of that.
However, Apple seems like it'll change the tide of sorts with the upcoming iPhone 8, which is set to be unveiled on Sept. 12 and rumored to roll out on Sept. 22.
That said, back in February, the Cupertino brand acquired RealFace, an Israeli startup that works on facial recognition whose software is said to be capable of creating 3D representations of faces. In contrast, the Galaxy Note 8 relies only on 2D, and as a result, it can be fooled pretty easily, which is evidenced by the clip above.
Things are still up in the air, though — Samsung may improve its software, while Apple may or may not develop secure facial recognition for the iPhone 8. Nevertheless, Samsung's current product is still far from impressive, and no one in their right mind should bother with using its mobile facial recognition technology to keep their Galaxy Note 8 and Galaxy S8 phones safe.