Apple has been granted a patent for a system that could turn the entire display of an iPhone screen into a fingerprint scanner.
As AppleInsider explains, the system entails the use of several specialized transparent layers between the device’s display and the cover glass. Using a combination of dielectric materials, conductive traces, and an ‘array of finger biometric sensing pixels’, the layers would functionally enable a fingerprint scan anywhere on the device’s screen. That, of course, would allow Apple to ditch the traditional Home button, and to authenticate users passively as they interact with the device.
Along with numerous other IP holdings, the patent underscores Apple’s interest in developing in-display Touch ID without definitely showing how exactly it’s going to do so; this is just another of several potential methods. Meanwhile, this week saw the announcement of the world’s first in-display fingerprint sensor, with Goodix having unveiled its technology at Mobile World Congress.
The development shows that such a system is possible, while also leaving room for Apple or another company to improve upon it with, say, full-screen scanning, as depicted in this newly-granted patent.