Vivo Switches Suppliers for Sequel Smartphone’s In-Display Sensor

A new Vivo smartphone’s in-display fingerprint scanning feature is powered by Goodix hardware, the latter has announced.

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The revelation comes immediately on the heels of Vivo’s announcement of the X21 and the X21 UD. The latter is only the second commercial smartphone to feature in-display fingerprint scanning technology, following the launch of the original in-display pioneer, the Vivo X20 UD, in January.

That device’s novel in-display technology was powered by a Synaptics Clear ID sensor, making the switch to a Goodix sensor for the X21 UD a surprising move, especially given the short timeframe between the smartphones’ launches. Possibly the devices have been in development simultaneously, with Vivo seeking to trial in-display technologies from both suppliers as a means of finding the most effective solution. Or, it may be that Synaptics was unable to deliver enough units to meet Vivo’s demand for the X21 UD, prompting the company to seek an additional supplier; in a statement announcing the X21 UD integrations, Goodix described itself as “the main fingerprint sensor supplier” for the device – not the sole supplier.

In any case, the X21 UD represents the culmination of a long development process for Goodix, which actually staked a claim to delivering the “world’s first” in-display fingerprint sensor technology at last year’s Mobile World Congress, but failed to deliver that technology in a commercial device before Synaptics took the lead with Vivo’s X20 UD.

As the X21 UD makes its way to market at the end of this month, other smartphone makers may keep an eye on how it performs, and in particular how its in-display technology compares to that of the X20 UD. In-display technology represents the next step in mobile fingerprint recognition, and those OEMs that are not prepared to abandon the modality in favor of facial recognition or iris scanning are likely eager to follow Vivo’s lead, and to opt for the better solution if there’s a clear winner.