By JR Bookwalter

iOS 7.1 reveals evidence future iPads will have Touch ID

Fingerprint recognition is fast becoming ubiquitous on smartphones, but there are indications that Apple might be planning to introduce the same technology into its line of tablet products as well. turned up clues today that look promising for iPad owners hoping to see Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint recognition sensor make the leap from iPhone 5S to their favorite tablets.

According to the Twitter account of iOS developer @bp_unicorn, fragments of code from the Biometric Kit included with iOS 7.1 appear to reveal several references to the iPad.

“I’ve just found a reference to the iPad family in Touch ID’s resources… #TouchID on the new #iPad?” the Thursday tweet reads.

iOS 7.1 Biometric Kit code

Nothing new?

Rumors have circulated about the addition of Touch ID to the iPad lineup, with many expecting Cupertino to offer just such a feature with the latest iPad Air and iPad mini 2 with Retina Display models introduced late last year.

That speculation didn’t quite pan out, but the UIDeviceFamily references in iOS 7.1 clearly define two families: The first covers iPhone and iPod touch devices, while the second, which is clearly noted in the screenshot above, covers the iPad family.

But not so fast: 9to5Mac scribe Benjamin Mayo tweeted earlier today that iPad-related biometric code has “been around for several iOS updates,” potentially throwing cold water on the idea of Touch ID’s imminent arrival on an iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3.

Be that as it may, if Apple history tells us anything, it’s that features new to one device more often that not do eventually make their way to others – so it may just be a matter of waiting until Cupertino is good and ready.

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