Apple appeared to have officially killed off Touch ID on its premium flagships in 2018. Now, there’s a chance that the authentication system could return to a high-end iPhone next year.
A pair of reports from Taiwan-based Economic Daily News suggest that Apple is tapping supply partners for an under-display fingerprint sensor, suggesting that the company could add one as early as next year.
Under-Display Fingerprint Readers
Apple has reportedly arranged for one of its representatives to meet with Taiwan-based touchscreen manufacturer GIS sometime next week.
The topic of discussion? The possible development of an iPhone with an under-display fingerprint reader, which could be released as soon as next year.
EDN suggests that Apple plans to use Qualcomm’s ultrasonic fingerprint sensing tech. Qualcomm already supplies similar display-embedded fingerprint readers to Samsung for its Galaxy S10 and Note 10 devices.
The reason for the meeting is apparently getting GIS to cooperate with Qualcomm on the display-embedded technology.
Apple is reportedly considering releasing “at least one” iPhone with a more advanced version of the fingerprint reading technology in 2020, but EDN did note that Apple could push that timeframe to 2021.
Additional Touch ID Context
Although Apple appeared to be phasing out Touch ID with the introduction of its iPhone X in 2017, there have long been rumors that the company was considering an iPhone with display-embedded fingerprint authentication.
Many of those early rumors suggested that the iPhone X could be the device to have it, even though Apple’s official stance is that under-display fingerprint tech was never planned for that device.
Apple also apparently wants its under-display fingerprint tech to be a fullscreen solution, meaning users could authenticate by placing a finger anywhere on the display.
Coincidentally, that’s something that Qualcomm is working on, as evidenced by a leak from a closed-door meeting at the 2019 Mobile World Conference.
It’s also worth noting that Qualcomm unveiled a new 30x20mm in-display fingerprint sensor at Snapdragon Tech Summit in Hawaii. According to the San Diego-based firm, that sensor is about 17 times larger than the one in the Galaxy S10, PCMag reported on Tuesday.
Other 2020 iPhone Rumors
Apple is largely expected to switch up the form factors for its 2020 iPhone lineup, introducing new 5.4-inch and 6.7-inch iPhones along with a 6.1-inch successor.
There have been other interesting rumors concerning next year’s iPhones, too. A recent JPMorgan research notes suggested that Apple could release four new iPhones next fall, including both a mid-range and a high-end 6.1-inch model.
We expect Apple to unveil the 2020 flagship iPhone lineup at a keynote event next September.