Apple Testing a ‘Fake Eye Contact’ Feature for FaceTime Video Calling App

Jul 3, 2019
Apple FaceTime
Photo by Kevin Grieve on Unsplash

As part of the third beta of iOS 13, Apple is testing a feature called “FaceTime Attention Correction” to make users fake an eye-to-eye contact on Apple’s video-calling app, even when they are looking elsewhere.

Normally, video calls tend to make it look like both participants are peering off to one side or the other, since they are looking at the person on their display rather than directly into the front-facing camera which is exactly what this feature intends to fix, The Verge reported on Tuesday.

“Haven’t tested this yet, but if Apple uses some dark magic to move my gaze to seem like I’m staring at the camera and not at the screen I will be flabbergasted. (New in beta 3!),” app designer Mike Rundle who spotted the test tweeted.

The feature appears to use some kind of image manipulation to correct this and results in realistic-looking fake eye contact between the FaceTime users.

“Looking at him (Rundle’s friend) on-screen (not at the camera) produces a picture of me looking dead at his eyes like I was staring at the camera. This is insane,” he added.

Also see: Apple issues security fix for eavesdropping FaceTime bug

Shockingly, the feature’s debut on iOS was predicted by Rundle himself back in 2017.

For now, the feature only appears to be working on the iPhone XS and XS Max with this version of the beta and can be toggled on and off from within FaceTime’s settings.

The “FaceTime Attention Correction” feature should arrive in the public-facing beta next week, the report added.

Apple unveiled iOS 13 with several features like Dark Mode and Apple sign-in. The next generation of Apple’s operating system (OS) would make unlocking the Apple device with Face ID 30 percent faster, downloads 50 percent smaller and updates 60 percent smaller.