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(Pocket-lint) - Apple has filed a patent that could mean the Apple Watch will be able to autheticate users without the need for a passcode in the future.

The patent - which was spotted by The Next Web - is for a light sensor on the back of its Apple Watch. A component would shine light onto the user's wrist which would then be used to generate a field image of the area, according to the site. 

It's said this image, which would feature veins from your arm, should be as unique as a fingerprint, allowing the Apple Watch to recognise who has put the Apple Watch on and unlocking it accordingly. The technology has been dubbed Wrist ID, though we aren't convinced this would be the final marketing name if something like this did appear.

USPTOFuture Apple Watch could have Wrist ID, patent suggests photo 3

It's worth noting that previous rumours have suggested the Apple Watch could see Touch ID arrive, possibly within the Digital Crown or the screen itself. The latter idea came from a previous patent filed at the end of 2019 so even if this Wrist ID idea is plausible, we don't expect to see it anytime soon.

Companies often file patents, many of which never see the light of day. There's no harm in hoping though right?

If you want to read all the rumours surrounding the next Apple Watch, you can head to our separate feature that rounds them all up. 

Writing by Britta O'Boyle.