Samsung Electronics has been granted a patent for an under-screen fingerprint scanner by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO). The company had filed for the patent back in April and received the confirmation that the patent was granted from WIPO in November. The patent is titled as Electronic Device for Supporting the Fingerprint Verification and Operating Method.
The patent suggests at a pressure-sensitive under-display fingerprint scanner. This new technology by Samsung is capable of differentiating between ‘normal’ screen touches and specific gestures to use the fingerprint sensor. The pressure sensor is positioned on the bottom, underneath the display panel. There could be up to 12 pressure points on the screen. So your device will literally sense your fingerprint anywhere on the screen.
With this new technology, Samsung plans to make its smartphones work 100% efficiently only when the device is successfully authenticated by the real owner of the device. For instance, the image gallery will show only a few pre-defined images when the device is not at the hands of the owner. Similarly, other apps like messaging, e-mail and banking apps will also allow limited access if not authenticated by the owner.
Though not as efficient as this new technology by Samsung, Qualcomm has demonstrated on-screen fingerprint sensor at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Sanghai, China earlier this year. The prototype device, a modified Vivo XPlay 6, had a fingerprint sensor on the bottom part of the display. The current crop of Samsung’s flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ and the Note 8 feature a pressure sensitive home button behind the display. The fingerprint sensor is placed at the back of the phone, beside the rear camera. This patent now suggests Samsung might introduce the new technology in its upcoming flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S9 series or the Galaxy Note 9.
The Galaxy S9 is rumored to be unveiled at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January next year. However, there’s no official word from Samsung in this regard. Sooner or later, Samsung will for sure implement this new technology in its smartphones. We all hope Tizen smartphone ecosystem grows strong enough to deserve this technology someday.