These days, it seems tech we used to dream of and visualize in movies is fast becoming reality. One of the common ideas from the 90s was biometric security on mobile devices — a big fingerprint icon appeared on a touchscreen and you’d actually touch the screen to have your print read.
In the real world — at least as far as your typical consumer and enterprise devices go — this functionality is available in the form of a dedicated surface area sensor. This is something I’ve had to explain to my mom the first time she tried to pick up an iPhone and thought she had to touch the display to register her fingerprint.
I don’t blame her for being confused due to what pop culture installed in her mind, but pretty soon it will actually be a thing, with firms like CrucialTec aiming to commercialize finger-reading screen technology as soon as this year. The company’s tech uses transparent components which can be fitted beneath your phone’s glass while still being sensitive enough to accurately authenticate fingerprint readings.
Next year, their plan is to introduce a commercialized version of this concept that would enable the entirety of the display to read a fingerprint, something that would make it very hard to miss your mark, so to speak.
We’ve long salivated over the prospect of having fingerprint functionality without the extra buttons and surface areas needed to facilitate it. Technologies like Qualcomm’s Sense ID are still desired in that regard, but for one reason or another, we have yet to see them seed into the market in any meaningful way.
The usual perpetrator for snubbing technological advancements in consumer products is cost, and this can often be further weighed down with issues of yield due to lack of components and materials. But with both smartphones and wearables with CrucialTec’s technology said to be introduced later this year, perhaps we’ll finally see the death of the fingerprint dimple for something far more intuitive and clean. Fingers crossed!