Face ID is designed to work with your eyes, nose, and mouth visible, “according to Apple. If you wear a mask at grocery stores and other public places, that’s a problem. Here’s what you need to know about unlocking your iPhone with Face ID when wearing a mask .
Apple iOS 13.5 Update Will Help
Soon, your iPhone will be better at detecting face masks. When Face ID notices that you are wearing a mask, it will quickly ask for your PIN or passcode. You don’t need to stand there and wait for Face ID to try and fail to detect your face. This will be a big improvement.
This is part of the iOS 13.5 update which also includes a new digital contact tracking feature. Apple released the fourth beta developer for it on May 6, 2020. Hopefully it will be available as a stable software for everyone soon.
Can You Set a Face ID with a Mask?
While Face ID usually can’t recognize your face when wearing a mask, some people have proposed an alternative: Prepare a “new look” when wearing a mask.
Your iPhone will let you “Set Appearance Alternately” and will unlock the primary or secondary appearance. This feature can be used to adjust the appearance of family members, for example, and you and that family member will be able to unlock your iPhone.
In theory, you can wear your mask, go to Settings> Face ID & Passcode> Prepare Alternate Appearances, and adjust your appearance when wearing a mask.
However, most people report that this does not work for them. IPhone face recognition is designed to see your nose and mouth. Sometimes it might work for several people, but it was not designed to succeed. We will not count on it.
Prepare an alternative appearance on the iPhone
How to Start Typing Your PIN Faster
If you unlock your iPhone while wearing a mask, you usually have to wait for the Face ID to fail before you can type your PIN. There is a fast way to overcome this delay.
When Face ID tries to scan your face, tap the words “Face ID” in the middle of the screen. A PIN or password entry entry will appear and you can type the code quickly. You don’t have to wait for Face ID to fail and offer a passcode prompt.
How to Turn off Face ID for Apple Pay
If you have an iPhone with Face ID, you might want to leave it activated. When you are at home and not wearing a mask, Face ID is a quick way to unlock your iPhone without typing a PIN.
However, you might want to disable Face ID for some situations. For example, if you pay with Apple Pay at a store and you want to type your PIN quickly instead of waiting for Face ID, you can deactivate Face ID for Apple Pay.
To do this, go to Settings> Face ID & Passcode and change “Apple Pay” under “Use Face ID For.”
When you double-press the side button of your iPhone to start paying with Apple Pay, you can immediately tap “Pay With Passcode” and type your passcode instead of waiting for the Face ID to try and fail.
You can also choose to deactivate Face ID to unlock your iPhone on the Settings> Face ID & Passcode screen. Turn off the “iPhone Unlock” feature and Face ID will not be used to unlock your iPhone. You can start typing the passcode immediately after waking your iPhone from sleep. You might want to deactivate it before you go with a mask and activate it when you go home, for example.
How to Unlock Your iPhone Fewer
With Face ID, unlock your iPhone fast enough. With your passcode, you have to type the code every time you take your phone out of your pocket.
At least that’s the default setting. If you want to spend less time typing in your passcode and unlocking your iPhone in public, consider changing the auto-lock settings.
To do this, go to Settings> Display & Brightness> Automatic Lock and select a delay time. For example, if you set your iPhone to “Never” automatic lock, you can unlock it once and leave the screen on when you put it in your pocket. Every time you take your phone out of your pocket, the screen turns on and you can use it right away – until you turn off your iPhone with the power button.
Disabling auto-lock – or making it less frequent – will obviously use more battery power than just letting your iPhone fall asleep. However, if you plan to use your iPhone in a grocery store or other public place, you can open it just once, telling you not to lock yourself automatically, and you don’t need to type the passcode until you turn it off. That can be easily comparable to the battery tradeoff when shopping.
If you do this, consider disabling automatic lock when you go out in public and reactivating it when you get home. Better your iPhone’s battery life to activate most of the time.