The Photos app in iOS 10 has slowly been getting smarter over the years. New features have been added to it with each successive iteration of iOS so that it can function with the ever increasing number of photos iPhone owners take and also work well with the added functionality of the Camera app. iOS 9 came with several new automatic albums that sorted selfies, and screenshots into their own albums. With iOS 10 the Photos app has borrowed a feature from Facebook; it can now identify people in photos. This makes it easier for you to create memories with the same people and as you identify people, iOS gets better at recognizing their face. Since the feature doesn’t have the data that Facebook has, it can only identify faces in photos but cannot name them. Not even the photo set for a contact helps. You have to manually identify who someone is once their face has been detected. Here’s how.
Open the Photos app and look for an album called ‘People’. This album will be created automatically in iOS 10. Inside, you will see thumbnails of the faces that have been identified. You might see the same person identified as two separate people. To fix this, i.e. to consolidate the two faces into one person, you will need to identify them both and merge them. Tap a face thumbnail to go to all the photos they’ve been identified in. Tap ‘Add Name’ at the very top, and enter a name. You can search for and select names stored in your contacts.
When the same person has been identified twice but in separate instances i.e. iOS thinks they are two different people, you can merge them into one by assigning them the same name. All you need to do is tap ‘Add Name’ and select the same name in both cases. If you have too many instances of the same person being identified separately, assigning them a name individually will take too much time. Instead, tap the ‘Add People’ button at the very end of the ‘People’ album and then select all faces of the same person on the next screen. Tap the ‘Merge’ button at the bottom left and they will all be grouped together. You now only have to add a name for the person once.
If iOS 10 fails to identify a face that appears in multiple photos, you can manually identify it by tapping the ‘Add People’ button. The Photos app will show you a rather long list of every single face it has found in all your photos. Merge the ones you need to, and then add a name to them.