Apple’s latest firmware release has once again given away hints about what the Cupertino-based business has planned for the short-to-medium-term future. The source code for iOS the recently dropped 13.4.5 beta gives insight into a new iPhone model with Touch ID that will work with Apple’s new CarKey API.

Apple’s brand new entry-level iPhone – or, the iPhone 9 as it is being referred to – isn’t exactly a secret. References to the device have previously been spotted in Apple’s iOS source code and it is widely expected that the Cupertino-based giant will announce and release that device extremely soon.

In fact, some even suggest it could be released before the week is out but that remains to be seen. Now, thanks to the latest iOS 13.4.5 beta, it’s all-but-confirmed that Apple’s new CarKey API will be supported by that device.

For the first time, references in the source code related to the CarKey API and Touch ID have been spotted with this latest seed. Previously, sole references to devices running Face ID were present and showed that the CarKey API would be available on Apple’s modern, high-end devices, as you would expect from a new technology. However, with this release, a CAR_KEY_EXPRESS_MDE_FOOTER_TOUCHID key has been found with the following text string description: “Car key will work without requiring Touch ID or your passcode, and maybe available when your iPhone needs to be charged.”

The latter part, of course, references the ability to authenticate the process without using Touch ID, or Face ID for that matter, using Express Transit Card technology that would allow the protocols and processes to continue working even if the device has ran out of battery. The source code also contains explicit strings stipulating that certain devices do not support Car Key, which immediately suggests that owners of older devices will be fresh out of luck if they want to locjk unlock, or start their car with this new technology.

When announced and released, the new entry-level iPhone 9 is expected to come equipped with a 4.7-inch display and have integrated Touch ID technology and Apple’s own A13 processor. The lack of an OLED display and TrueDepth camera system that allows Face ID will allow Apple to keep the cost down and offer an affordable model that looks almost identical to the extremely popular iPhone 8 series.

(Source: 9to5Mac, Top image: iPhone 9 concept renders)

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