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The iPhone 8 may automatically mute notifications when you look at the screen

Published Aug 9th, 2017 10:08AM EDT
iPhone 8 3D sensor
Image: Martin Hajek

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One of the most significant upgrades the iPhone 8 is expected to receive is a front-facing 3D sensor that would enable users to unlock their phones via facial recognition. That might be the sensor’s primary job, but according to the latest code mined from the HomePod firmware (which has already been the source of countless leaks), it won’t be the sole functionality of the sensor.

iOS developer Guilherme Rambo tweeted out a line of code on Tuesday which seems to suggest that the iPhone 8 will automatically mute or suppress notifications sounds when you’re looking at the display:

As 9to5Mac notes, not every feature that appears in the code of the firmware will make its way into the final product, but at the very least, Apple appears to be toying with the idea of muting notifications when the user is actively looking at their phone. Which makes a ton of sense, by the way. Why would you need your phone to beep or buzz when you’re looking at the screen and can see the notifications?

While this wouldn’t exactly be a game changing feature for the iPhone 8, it does have us curious about what else Apple will use the 3D sensor for aside from facial recognition to unlock the phone. What other ways could Apple take advantage of the technology to convince a smartphone owner it’s worth paying a premium for the OLED iPhone? After all, the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus will also reportedly launch this fall, so Apple is going to need to give the iPhone 8 every advantage to ensure it succeeds.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.