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Apple's iOS 11.3 hints at iPad with facial recognition tech

A bit of code found in the new software suggests a more "modern" iPad is coming.

Roger Cheng Former Executive Editor / Head of News
Roger Cheng (he/him/his) was the executive editor in charge of CNET News, managing everything from daily breaking news to in-depth investigative packages. Prior to this, he was on the telecommunications beat and wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal for nearly a decade and got his start writing and laying out pages at a local paper in Southern California. He's a devoted Trojan alum and thinks sleep is the perfect -- if unattainable -- hobby for a parent.
Expertise Mobile, 5G, Big Tech, Social Media Credentials
  • SABEW Best in Business 2011 Award for Breaking News Coverage, Eddie Award in 2020 for 5G coverage, runner-up National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Award for culture analysis.
Roger Cheng
Apple could redesign its iPad Pro line to include FaceID.

Apple could redesign its iPad Pro line to include FaceID. 

Oscar Gutierrez/CNET

Clues about the next iPad may be hiding in Apple's latest mobile software. 

Filipe Esposito, editor in chief of iHelpBR, tweeted that he found a reference to an "iPad_Modern" in the code for the developer preview of iOS 11.3.

Apple used "Modern iPhone" as a placeholder to describe the iPhone X before its release, suggesting that this iPad could get the same kind of features as the top-tier iPhone. Bloomberg had previously reported that Apple was working to create an iPad featuring thinner bezels and the company's FaceID facial recognition system. 

Though Apple has upgraded the iPad line with its higher-end Pro version, the tablets continue to see little sales growth, with consumers opting for higher-end PCs or sticking with smartphones with larger screens. 

Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.