According to a new report by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the highly-anticipated Apple iPhone 8 will have no fingerprint sensor. Instead, it’ll be replaced with a face-recognition system.
While all rumors and reports should be taken with some skepticism, KGI Securities and Kuo specifically are historically quite accurate. The removal of the fingerprint sensor could cause an even greater upheaval and public outcry than the removal of the headphone jack.
Replacing the fingerprint sensor with face recognition was rumored back in July, but many still expected a revolutionary, under-the-screen fingerprint sensor.
The major reason for this change is that Samsung, the sole supplier of OLED panels for the iPhone 8, was unable to make panels with the fingerprint sensor under the screen. This monopoly on supply also contributed to the expected $1000 (828 €) price.
Facial recognition features, such as full facial recognition or just iris detection are already present in other phones, like the infamous Galaxy Note 7, the more recent Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+, or with notoriously insecure versions in stock Android. While the press lauded the Note 7’s iris recognition for its speed, precision, and relative security, the feature had issues in low-light conditions. However, facial recognition was an afterthought or secondary feature in these phones, not a core component.
Apple is not a company which likes to take unnecessary risks. Since face recognition will be the key unlocking mechanism for most users, we can expect a solution that allows recognition even in dark rooms, or with sunglasses.
If Apple successfully executes 3D facial recognition, it would signal a big turnaround from years of playing “catch-up” to Android phones with more features.
Of course, we’ll only know the outcome of this gamble on September 12th, when the public gets its first peek at the Apple iPhone 8.
Featured Image, Source: 9to5Mac