Some savvy maneuvering on Apple’s part led to the abandonment of a plan to integrate a fingerprint sensor in the Nexus 6 smartphone, according to a Business Insider article by Lisa Eadicicco. In essence, Apple acquired the one biometrics tech provider that Motorola had been hoping to work with.
That supplier is Authentec, which Apple bought in 2012 for $356 million. Motorola’s CEO, Dennis Woodside, apparently had been planning to use Authentec’s technology to implement a fingerprint sensor on the Nexus 6 exactly where there is now an indented “M” logo; when Apple bought the company, Woodside saw that “the second best supplier was the only one available to everyone else in the industry and they weren’t there yet,” and ultimately decided to ditch the whole idea, believing the sensor to be relatively unimportant.
Today, many would beg to differ with such a line of thinking. The ascent of mCommerce, pioneered by Apple Pay with its TouchID security, has led to a preponderance of fingerprint-sensing smartphones; biometric security is now becoming standard on all such devices. And that trend looks set to continue as younger demographics embrace the technology and shrug off the archaic password system. With Motorola now hoping for a successful reboot – and many more biometrics suppliers shopping their wares – Motorola will almost certainly opt for a different course going forward.