Apple patent filing shows future potential of Touch ID not tied to a button

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited July 2016
A patent filing made public today stems directly from the Apple purchase of biometric company AuthenTec, and could lead to future iPhones and iPads using part or all of the touchscreen to act a Touch ID sensor.




The patent filing describes more in detail the possibility of a buttonless TouchID implementation that has been rumored for a 2017 anniversary iteration of the iPhone. Additionally, the patent also suggests a conceivable implementation of the entire display acting as the Touch ID sensor.

The patent is attributed directly to Apple, and uses no shell company to obscure ownership, as is suspected is the case with wireless earbuds known as "AirPods." The primary inventor is Dale R. Setlak, co-founder of biometric company AuthenTec.




AuthenTec was purchased by Apple in August 2012 for $356 million, after multiple electronics developers expressed interest in the company's technologies, including what would become the Touch ID sensor.

The 2017 edition of the iPhone, which would commemorate the 10-year anniversary of the device, is said to have not only the Touch ID sensor embedded in the display, but also the front-facing camera, and the speaker.


Edge-to-edge iPhone display concept by Martin Hajek.


Artist's renditions of the rumored device place a physical button at the bottom of the screen. However, should Apple be able to implement the patent as shown in the filing today, no discrete button for Touch ID would be necessary.

Apple's made the initial patent filing for the whole-screen Touch ID implementation on January 27, 2015.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    slprescottslprescott Posts: 737member
    AuthenTec was a GREAT acquisition by Apple, especially at the price. I was thrilled when the news first broke, and Apple's leverage of their technology lived up to my hopes.

    AuthenTec examplifies how Apple is able to monetize IP much higher than what the company had as a standalone company. Touch ID improves the overall appeal of the iPhone platform, and that delivers revenue to Apple in multiple ways (hardware, software, services).
    califastasleeprepressthis1983
  • Reply 2 of 10
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,499member
    It's obvious Apple wants to do that in the future. A 3d touch to open notifications will ensure that the fingerprint is very clear and the notification will appear only with the right finger.
  • Reply 3 of 10
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    Touch ID and the camera integrated into the display would be amazing. in my mind that's the empty promise of video conferencing -- everybody looking off-camera as they look at their own screens and not the camera -- no eye contact. (except in movies and television, of course.)
    netroxcalirepressthis
  • Reply 4 of 10
    It will also be one hell of a TriCorder - as it sees into your inner skin layers and more. And not just skin - your blood and more too...
    staticx57calirepressthis
  • Reply 5 of 10
    I guess this means no Touch ID home button this year?
  • Reply 6 of 10
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 862member
    I guess this means no Touch ID home button this year?
    I'd say at least 3 models away.
  • Reply 7 of 10
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 832member
    mattinoz said:
    I guess this means no Touch ID home button this year?
    I'd say at least 3 models away.
    Oh I bet Samsung will be rushing to release their version first, no matter how half-baked it will be, just so they can claim the first. When Apple came out with much better implementation later, the world would boo Apple for copying Samsung design again. Just wait and see.
    edited July 2016 repressthis
  • Reply 8 of 10
    kevin kee said:
    Oh I bet Samsung will be rushing to release their version first, no matter how half-baked it will be, just so they can claim the first. When Apple came out with much better implementation later, the world would boo Apple for copying Samsung design again. Just wait and see.
    Oh, I wish it weren't true. :(
  • Reply 9 of 10
    starwarsstarwars Posts: 65member
    Edge to edge design with all those icons around is a worst idea, just like the 3 capacitative buttons on android. Have always accidentally brush off those buttons while holding.
  • Reply 10 of 10
    19831983 Posts: 1,041member
    Dale Setlak? Doesn't sound like an Israeli name much, which AuthenTec was originally no? Anyway one of the best purchases the company has ever made...
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