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Samsung has a cool idea for in-display fingerprint sensors on foldables

One in-display fingerprint sensor for two screens sounds neat. But will we see it on a future Samsung device?

Published onOctober 11, 2021

Samsung Galaxy Fold 3 laying down screen on
Eric Zeman / Android Authority
  • Samsung has filed a patent for a foldable phone with a double-sided in-display fingerprint sensor.
  • This would enable fingerprint unlocking via both screens on a Galaxy Fold-style device.

One of the more understated challenges with foldable phones is biometric unlocking, and we’ve seen almost all major devices adopt a side-mounted fingerprint scanner instead of an under-display sensor. Samsung has adopted a side scanner on its foldables too, but it looks like the company is hard at work on an alternative solution.

Let’s Go Digital has uncovered a Samsung patent filed with the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO), detailing a dual-sided in-display fingerprint sensor for a Galaxy Z Fold-style foldable. Check out an image below, courtesy of the outlet.

The patent suggests placing the fingerprint scanner near the bottom of the smartphone display, much like traditional phones. But this scanner would also be able to work via the lower left-hand side of the foldable screen when opened, owing to its dual-sided nature.

It’s a rather clever solution to implementing an in-display fingerprint sensor on a foldable phone. Otherwise, you’d probably need to add two separate sensors if you wanted this technology on both the smartphone screen and foldable display. Samsung’s approach could also save space inside the phone compared to using two separate sensors.

This is just a patent though, and companies often patent designs and inventions that fail to see the light of day. So you might not want to hold your breath for a dual-sided under-display fingerprint sensor landing on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4.

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