The majority of fingerprint scanners can be found either on the back of a smartphone or on the front, embedded in the home button. But it looks like that status quo is soon about to change. According to a report from The Investor, CrucialTec, a manufacturer of fingerprint modules based in South Korea, will launch its on-screen fingerprint scanning solution that allows you to unlock your device by placing a finger on the screen sometime this year.
This means that we can expect to see the first smartphones featuring the new fingerprint technology hit the market in 2017. Unfortunately, CrucialTec did not reveal an exact time frame or the smartphone manufacturers it is currently working with.
The new technology is called Display Fingerprint Solution (DFS) and has apparently been getting positive reviews from clients that are testing it out, especially from those that are based in China. The module can be embedded under the smartphone screen and is capable of detecting touches as light as a single hair. It can extract high-resolution fingerprints at 500 dots per inch.
DFS is also a lot safer than current fingerprint scanners that are available, as it can recognize multiple fingerprints at once. But this is just the beginning. CrucialTec said that it is also working on an upgraded solution that will hit the market next year. What makes next year’s version better is that you’ll be able to place your finger on any part of the screen to unlock the device, and not just on a specific area.
Fingerprint sensors that sit under the display just might be the next big thing and would make smartphones a lot cleaner and nicer to look at. The technology is also coming at the right time: we expect to see a lot of devices with small bezels around the screen in the near future, like the soon to be announced LG G6 and Samsung Galaxy S8.
Small bezels below the screen mean that smartphone makers have to place the fingerprint scanner on the back, as there’s just not enough room below the screen anymore. But not everyone is a fan of rear-mounted scanners. This new technology will change that, so smartphone makers will still be able to choose where to place their fingerprint module.