Apple rarely reveals information about its future products apart from in the field of Artificial Intelligence. Here Apple's scientists benefit from a constant exchange of ideas. They publish their research and, occasionally, there are articles that mere mortals can understand.

One such article: Recognizing People in Photos Through Private On-Device Machine Learning describes an algorithm that will be better able to recognize people in the photos in iOS 15 onwards using artificial intelligence on the iPhone.

With this new technology the People feature of Photos will be better able to catalogue the different subjects in your photos: identifying people in photos even if their faces are obscured.

The trick is that artificial intelligence on the chip not only identifies the face of a subject, but also searches for what could be identified as a body elsewhere in the photo. The new system can then identify the subject based on things like clothes and use the combination of colours and textures to recognize the people in the photos, even if they are turned away from the camera - or wearing a mask. It isn't necessary for the face to be visible.

The assumption behind this is simple: If someone wears the same clothes in a series of photos, it is most likely the same person.

This article originally appeared on Macwelt. Translation by Karen Haslam.