Synaptics Stakes Claim as In-Display Sensor Provider for New Vivo Phone

“It’s been terrific working with Vivo to bring cutting-edge leadership and differentiation to market with Clear ID,” adding that a “fast-paced industry-shift towards bezel-free OLED infinity displays has driven fingerprint authentication into the touchscreen display area of smartphones.” – Kevin Barber, SVP, Synaptics

Synaptics has announced that its Clear ID optical in-display fingerprint sensor technology is once again being used to enable in-display fingerprint scanning in a Vivo smartphone – the new X21 UD.Synaptics Stakes Claim as In-Display Sensor Provider for New Vivo Phone

The announcement comes just a day after China-based Goodix announced that it is “the main fingerprint sensor supplier” for the new Vivo smartphone. That would suggest that Synaptics is a secondary supplier; with the X21 UD’s unveiling arriving just a couple of months after the pioneering X20 UD – the world’s first commercial smartphone to feature an in-display fingerprint sensor – it’s possible that Synaptics, the sensor supplier for that first device, couldn’t meet Vivo’s demand for the X21 UD, prompting the firm to seek out an additional supplier.

Synaptics’ statement, in any case, makes no mention of alternative suppliers, announcing simply that its FS9500 Clear ID sensors “are featured on the new Vivo X21 UD smartphone.” Elaborating further on what sounds like a close business relationship between the firms, Synaptics SVP Kevin Barber asserts, “It’s been terrific working with Vivo to bring cutting-edge leadership and differentiation to market with Clear ID,” adding that a “fast-paced industry-shift towards bezel-free OLED infinity displays has driven fingerprint authentication into the touchscreen display area of smartphones.”

That’s certainly true where Vivo is concerned, but at the moment it’s the only smartphone maker to have implemented the technology in a commercially available device. Others may be in line – Nokia, for example, is thought to be preparing its own such smartphone – but Samsung has stuck with rear-mounted fingerprint sensors in its latest devices as it has shifted focus to iris recognition for user authentication, while Apple appears to be on the verge of abandoning fingerprint recognition entirely.

As for the X21 UD, Vivo’s device is expected to go on sale in China next week.