Apple has teased it with a patent filing for an alternative Touch ID method that would allow the use of the entire display as a fingerprint scanner instead of using the Home button. However, Cupertino has yet to announce any real progress on that technology. Today, May 2, LG Innotek has announced the invention of a fingerprint sensor module that is built under the display’s glass, according to Patently Apple.
Not only has LG Innotek invented a button-less fingerprint sensor module, but it’s on par with existing button-type components in terms of security, achieving a 0.002 percent of error rate. A spokesperson for the company stated that LG Innotek is “in talks with some handset manufacturers to commercialize the new modules within the year.”
Does this mean LG Innotek will supply such a fingerprint sensor module for use in the iPhone? There’s no clear indication of which smartphone manufacturers are already in talks with LG Innotek, but it very well could be reasonable for the company’s fingerprint sensor module to make its way into the iPhone. LG Innotek is part of the LG Group, which is a supplier for Apple’s iPhone and iPad displays.
Even so, Cupertino isn’t always opposed to reinventing the wheel, if they think they can make it better. Apple may decide to use its own patent-pending technology with a different manufacturer, but to me that seems silly. It would make far more sense to move forward with existing technology, if Apple truly wants to do away with the Home button.