Qualcomm, Vivo show off slow but convenient under-display fingerprint sensor

Qualcomm logoThe next wave of fingerprint readers on smart devices could be more inconspicuous than they are now. Earlier this year, Synaptics announced a new range of fingerprint sensors that can be integrated under polymers, ceramics, and glass, potentially providing more functions to Android soft buttons. Rumor has it that Apple has also been experimenting specifically with under-display fingerprint readers, and that's the area that Qualcomm has been focusing on as well. At Mobile World Congress Shanghai, the chip maker showed off its first ultrasonic-based, under-display fingerprint sensors in a prototype of the existing Vivo Xplay6 smartphone.

The technology built into this prototype allows the bottom-third of the smartphone's display to act as the fingerprint reader and unlock the device. As demonstrated in a hands-on demo by Engadget, you simply press your thumb to the display and the device unlocks within a second or so of reading your fingerprint. It doesn't appear to be a speedy as traditional smartphone fingerprint sensors, but that's not surprising since the technology is still in its infancy and hasn't yet been incorporated into any consumer devices.

Qualcomm, Vivo show off slow but convenient under-display fingerprint sensor

According to Vivo, the technology could be built out so the entire display could act as a fingerprint sensor. However, that will up the production costs dramatically. Engadget's report says that Vivo could eventually spread the technology through the bottom half of the display rather than just a small portion close to the bottom edge.

Qualcomm lays out the parameters for its "Fingerprint Sensor for Display" technology in a press release: it's built to detect fingerprints through OLED displays up to 1200µm, while its "Fingerprint Sensors for Glass and Metal" technology can detect input through cover glass up to 800µm and through aluminum up to 650µm.

The technology is built to better identify fingerprints even when obstructed with dirt or sweat, and it can be used underwater as well. Engadget tested what appears to be an under-metal fingerprint sensor on a submerged smartphone. This sensor, placed on the back of the handset, unlocked the device and immediately opened the camera app.

Qualcomm's under-display fingerprint technology certainly looks promising, but it has a long way to go before it replaces the ubiquitous traditional fingerprint readers. Speed will certainly be an issue to work on going forward, as will the ideal spacial implementation. A smartphone that has an entire display ready to unlock at the slightest touch of your thumb is hardly safe or convenient, so OEMs will have to experiment to find the best fingerprint sensor-to-display ratio that's both practical and cost-effective. Qualcomm's new glass and metal fingerprint sensor technology is slated to be available to OEMs later this month, while the display technology won't ship to OEMs until the fourth quarter of 2017.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Qualcomm, technologies

Comments
Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
or
Your comment:


Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party


Last news

 
Galaxy Note10 really is built around a 6.7-inch display
 
You may still be able to download your content
 
Facebook, Messenger and Instagram are all going away
 
Minimize apps to a floating, always-on-top bubble
 
Japan Display has been providing LCDs for the iPhone XR, the only LCD model in Apple’s 2018 line-up
 
The 2001 operating system has reached its lowest share level
 
The entire TSMC 5nm design infrastructure is available now from TSMC
 
The smartphone uses a Snapdragon 660 processor running Android 9 Pie
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) Review
The evolution of the successful smartphone, now with a waterproof body and USB Type-C
February 7, 2017 / 2
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
 
 

News Archive

 
 
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
      1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
30      




Poll

Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments (16)