It’s too early to get excited about Samsung’s second flagship of the year, but a new Galaxy Note 9 rumor says the phone may offer users the kind of feature the iPhone X — and any other all-screen phone out there — lacks: a fingerprint sensor under the display.
This isn’t the first time we have heard about Samsung working on such screen technology. But Samsung won’t be the only smartphone maker to launch such devices this year, or the first, assuming the report is accurate.
A post on Twitter from a person who shared other mobile leaks in the past, many of them posted on China’s Weibo social network, says that the Galaxy Note 9 is getting a fingerprint sensor under the display. The same person just shared details about the Galaxy S9’s camera.
Synaptics a few weeks ago announced that the first smartphones with fingerprint sensors positioned under the screen will hit the market this year, with a top five handset maker already committed to the technology. We later learned that Chinese smartphone maker Vivo is probably the company Synaptics teased in its announcement.
We know for sure that the Galaxy S9 can’t pack such components. The phone will be an almost identical Galaxy S8 copy, with the fingerprint sensor located on the back, albeit in a better position.
Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and Note 8 were also rumored to feature fingerprint sensors under the displays, but reports that followed said Samsung would only be ready to launch such tech in the second half of 2018.
At the time, Apple’s iPhone X wasn’t even official, and most rumors referred to it as the iPhone 8. Some of those reports claimed that Apple’s Touch ID sensor would be found under the iPhone X’s screen. But the closer we got to Apple’s September iPhone event, more and more reports claimed that Touch ID would be replaced by 3D facial recognition. Apple soon confirmed Face ID, and went on record to say that it never wanted Touch ID on an iPhone that supported Face ID.
But just because Apple is opposed to packing both Touch ID and Face ID sensors in a mobile device doesn’t mean Samsung won’t do it. We’ll probably see other smartphone makers launch handsets with fingerprint scanners built-in the display by the time Samsung’s actually launches the Note 9.