With newer smartphones being introduced with “FullView” displays, most manufacturers are still trying to find an ideal place for a fingerprint sensor. Samsung had gone with a rear-mounted unit while Apple has ditched it completely on the iPhone X. Interestingly, Huawei had managed to squeeze one on the bottom chin of its Huawei Mate 10 and honor View10.
It’s no secret that Chinese smartphone maker, vivo, wants to be the first to embed a fingerprint sensor on the screen itself. Last year they had a showcase using Qualcomm’s Sense ID technology and now they want to convince the world that they are one step closer in introducing one on a phone that you can actually buy.
At CES 2018, vivo has presented yet another in-display fingerprint sensor prototype but this time it uses Synaptics’ solution which is optical based instead of Qualcomm’s Ultrasonic version. The optical sensor works only with OLED displays for now and when the sensor is activated, it will light up just enough pixels to illuminate your fingertip.
At the moment, this in-display fingerprint sensor is capable of unlocking in 0.7 seconds. It’s fast but not as lightning fast as today’s fingerprint sensors that can unlock in 0.2 seconds. According to AndroidCentral, you’ll need to apply a bit of pressure on the display so that your fingerprint is flattened out properly to be read by the optical sensor. They added that the sensor under the display is visible when it’s tilted at an angle.
At the moment, the feature is still on a prototype device and vivo says they will have it on a real production smartphone very soon. So far they have yet to announce any launch timelines and there’s a chance that other manufacturers might beat them to the punch if they are not quick enough.
In the meantime, check out some hands-on videos below. Would you want this on your next smartphone? Let us know your thoughts below.