At CES 2018, the second generation of fingerprint scanners for smartphones was unveiled to the world. This first in-display fingerprint sensor (also known as under display fingerprint scanner) was demonstrated, and it wasn’t by Apple or Samsung or LG. Vivo pushed the big names aside and took the honours. Not that Vivo is a small player. The Chinese brand is one of the top 5 global smartphone makers.
What Is An In-display Fingerprint Sensor?
Traditional fingerprint scanners on smartphones work through a physical button that the user places their finger on. An in-display (also known as optical scanners) scanner does away with the physical button entirely and work through glass.
This means that manufacturers can now implement the fingerprint scanner directly on a smartphone screen. Even if the phone has an edge-to-edge (also called FullView or bezel-less) display, the fingerprint scanner does not have to move to the back or to the side.
Thanks to this new, screen-embedded biometric fingerprint sensor, smartphone brands can run away with design ideas as well. The restriction of needing a convenient location for the fingerprint scanner is removed.
How Does The In-display Fingerprint Scanner Work?
This new technology uses OLED displays and has the in-display fingerprint sensor located between the mainboard and the OLED panel. It remains invisible to the eye until needed. In any situation where your fingerprint is required, the spot will glow (manufacturers can get really creative here), so you can place your finger on it. Once the scanning is done, it fades away again till you need it.
Yes; this is really cool futuristic stuff. And you thought fingerprint scanners were already cool.
How Good Is It?
Synaptics affirms that optical fingerprint scanners are just as effective, fast and secure as traditional button-based scanners.
After the demonstration of the first in-display fingerprint sensor on a smartphone at CES 2018, Vivo has said that the phone is ready and will hit the market in early 2018. Which is any time from now. It cannot arrive soon enough.
Of course, with this announcement, we can expect other brands to start working towards putting this new technology on their devices.