“The dual biometrics could offer Samsung an easy trump card when it comes to comparisons between the security of the iPhone X and its Galaxy S9 smartphone.”
It looks like Samsung is indeed preparing an improved facial recognition feature for its next flagship smartphone. The effort was first reported in speculation about the Galaxy S9 last autumn, with new code and even an embedded video from Samsung’s settings app now suggesting that Samsung is repackaging its improved biometric authentication system as a feature called ‘Intelligent Scan’.
While Samsung is almost certainly placing a stronger emphasis on facial recognition in response to the success of the iPhone X’s Face ID system, there is a bit of nuance to the full story here. The iris-scanning authentication systems in last year’s Galaxy S8 was already supported by facial recognition, but the latter modality was so rudimentary that Samsung didn’t feel confident using it as an authentication mechanism on its own, or even highlighting it in its product specifications. The idea that facial recognition will not get top billing alongside iris recognition suggests that Samsung’s system has been significantly improved.
The dual biometrics could offer Samsung an easy trump card when it comes to comparisons between the security of the iPhone X and its Galaxy S9 smartphone. As sophisticated as Apple’s infrared iris scanning system is, it’s the iPhone X’s only biometric authentication system, while multimodal authentication is widely considered to be substantially more secure than authentication based on a single modality.
The deal could get even sweeter if Samsung keeps fingerprint scanning in the mix, and sweeter still if it manages to integrate a fingerprint sensor into the S9’s display. With the phone slated for release in mid-March, and in-display sensor technology still being so new that it hasn’t even reached the market yet, there is some doubt about whether Samsung will make it this far with the S9. But even without it, the company might be able to make a strong impression with Intelligent Scan.