Apple patents fingerprint scanning display, trackpad home button

Jordan O'Brien
November 26, 2013

Apple really wants to scan your fingerprints, it started to do so with the launch of the iPhone 5s with the phone’s defining feature being TouchID, but according to the company’s latest patent filing – the home button just isn’t convenient enough for scanning your finger, and instead the whole display should do it. The application which was filed with the World International Property Organization explains how the phone could recognise exactly what finger is on the screen, with Apple likely to apply that kind of technology to all sorts of new gestures – to launch apps etc.

The company is also looking at exploring other options, including a home button that would function as a trackpad – which we could have sworn we’ve seen before on BlackBerry Curve devices, but here goes Apple patenting the technology. Apple’s new home button however will navigate the phone by “revolving” or “twisting” your fingerprint on the button’s sensor, which at the same time would measure the length of time you’ve had your finger placed on it and the amount of pressure you’re applying,

Whilst these features may sound cool, Apple as with most companies don’t always bring its patented technology to its own devices, so don’t go expecting a full screen fingerprint scanner just yet. That said, Apple is likely to pull out all the stops to ensure that it doesn’t disappoint Wall Street with the release of the iPhone 6, and that consumers eat it up. With its recent acquisition of the makers of the original Kinect, it’s likely we’ll see some interesting technology in Cupertino’s next super phone.

About the Author

Jordan O'Brien

Technology Journalist with an unhealthy obsession with trains and American TV. Attempts satire far too often. (+44) 020 7324 3502

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