Apple Wants Your Heartbeat to Unlock Your iPhone

The iPhone's password security system works just fine, but compared to what Apple has in the works it's downright rudimentary. A recently filed patent indicates that our iPhones may someday identify us by the beating of our hearts.

Biometric security has found its way into other devices already, what with finger-swipe laptops and face/voice recognition software becoming increasingly popular. But Apple's proposed approach would take the concept even further, equipping your phone with an embedded heart rate monitor:

"For example, the durations of particular portions of a user's heart rhythm, or the relative size of peaks of a user's electrocardiogram (EKG) can be processed and compared to a stored profile to authenticate a user of the device."

The heart rate information would be acquired via external sensors, and could also be used to amass workout data or even help figure out what mood you're in and adjust media playback accordingly.

Of course, it's a patent, so who knows if it'll ever come to fruition. And even if it does, I assume it would require removing phones from their cases, which would be frustrating to have to do every time I wanted to make a call play Angry Birds. [USPTO via UnwiredView via AppleInsider]