Fingerprint sensors used to be a luxury only the highest-end of smartphones have, but in recent times, practically every device in various price range have the hardware now. Well, Synaptics’ new optical fingerprint sensor may usher us into a new era of fingerprint recognition, and it might just debut on next year’s flagship smartphones.
Dubbed Synaptics FS9100, this new fingerprint sensor are “designed for placement under the cover glass, including 2.5D glass, located in the front, bottom bezel of devices;” the glass can be up to 1mm thick too. In retrospect, Synaptics’ offering does sound similar to Qualcomm’s Sense ID, which takes advantage of ultrasonic technology instead.
Qualcomm’s Sense ID on the Xiaomi Mi 5s.
Naturally, there are several advantages to Synaptics’ new optical fingerprint sensor. For one, it is much more durable than conventional sensors; Synaptics mentioned that its sensor is also scratch proof and waterproof. Considering the fact that the sensor sits under a pane of glass, these are really a given. Other than that, the optical sensor will work well with wet fingertips as well.
Interestingly, rumours are suggesting that Synaptics’ new under-glass fingerprint sensor will debut on flagship devices next year; most notably, Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S8, which is said to feature an “all-screen” front. Nonetheless, it’ll be interesting to see if Synaptics’ new sensor will indeed be featured on the next wave of flagship smartphones.