Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner reportedly built into the home button

February 17, 2014
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During the early days of Galaxy S5 rumors we heard several reports suggesting that Samsung would one-up Apple by introducing an iris scanner. Eventually it was learned that the iris scanner wasn’t going to happen after all, and instead the device would feature some sort of fingerprint-scanning technology.

Previous rumors claimed the scanning tech would be built into the display, but a new report from SamMobile (citing insider sources) reveals that the scanner is actually integrated into the handset’s physical home button. As you’ve likely already surmised, this pretty much kills the rumors that Samsung might ax its physical buttons on the GS5 in favor of on-screen keys.

Unlike the iPhone 5S, the Galaxy S5’s fingerprint reader requires you to swipe your finger across the sensor. While this might be less convenient than a static reading approach, it is likely to be more accurate, and therefore more secure.

Unlike the iPhone 5S, the Galaxy S5’s fingerprint reader requires you to swipe your finger across the sensor.

The Galaxy S5’s reader is potentially a bit harder to use, but it’s also quite a bit more powerful, thanks to the fact that the scanner is implemented system-wide and even has the ability to register a total of 8 fingerprints. This means you can use one finger to unlock your phone and can even create special shortcuts or tasks for up to seven other fingers.

Adding an extra layer of security and privacy, Samsung is also preparing to introduce a special “Private Mode”. This is a place to store certain files and apps that you don’t want others to see or access. Unlocking private mode is as easy as entering a PIN or swiping one of your fingers.

Now it’s important to note that Samsung has yet officially confirm the existence of a fingerprint reader on the Galaxy S5, though SamMobile’s report certainly seems believable enough. Bottom-line, you should take the report with a grain of salt for now.

What do you think of Samsung’s fingerprint scanning technology based on what we know so far? Interested or not? For more details on what to expect from the Galaxy S5, be sure to check out our roundup post.

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