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One of the cornerstone features of Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5s is the Touch ID fingerprint scanning system. The feature allows an iPhone 5s user to unlock their iPhone or authenticate iTunes/App Store/iBooks downloads with the touch of their fingerprint on the device’s Home button. During the hands-on time with the device following Apple’s September 10th presentation, Apple demonstrated Touch ID with Apple employees carrying around iPhone 5s units that are programmed to their distinct fingers.

But come September 20th, Apple will have more than just a couple hundred journalists wanting to test out Touch ID: they will have millions of customers rushing into their hundreds of stores worldwide. With fingerprints being an authentication solution personalized to every individual, Apple needs an effective way to allow customers to test out Touch ID in its chain of retail stores. With millions of customers, it will be difficult for Apple to keep Touch ID testing restricted to devices showcased by Apple employees in the stores, and Apple has a solution…

We’ve learned that Apple has designed a demo application specific to the iPhone 5s demo units that will be found in Apple Stores and Carrier stores. To test Touch ID, a customer can launch the demo app. In this app, a customer can setup the device to recognize a single fingerprint. When the setup process is complete, the application will direct the user to place that fingerprint on the Touch ID sensor on the Home button. The application will then show that the Home button successfully read the fingerprint. Then, the app will tell the user to place a different finger on the Home button. The app will then show a red fingerprint outline to note that the authentication was not successful.

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While the Touch ID demos in Apple Stores will not show-off the Touch ID’s true functionality (with unlocking the phone and downloading content), but it does effectively get the point across about how fingerprints are either accepted or rejected. It also teaches customers about the setup process that will be found on purchased iPhone 5s devices. The application will be reset for each new customer to be able to try out the Touch ID setup process. Apple Store employees will be instructed to tell customers that Touch ID supports up to five distinctive fingerprints.

In addition to Touch ID, Apple has instructed its retail staff to promote the new 64-bit A7 processor and the new camera features. You can find Apple’s training guide for employees below:


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