One of the most unfortunate casualties of Apple’s iPhone redesign was Touch ID, which has been replaced by Face ID in all recent models. In fact, not a single iPhone released in 2019 featured a fingerprint sensor, as the new (mostly) bezel-less design doesn’t afford any room for the home button, and Apple isn’t prepared to embed a sensor within the display, as Samsung has on its latest flagship phones. But Touch ID isn’t dead quite yet.
According to a recent research note from TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo obtained by MacRumors, Apple plans to release an iPhone in the first half of 2021 that will feature Touch ID in the power button on the side of the device. Kuo says also this iPhone will have an LCD display, hinting at a lower price point.
As always in these TF research notes, Kuo didn’t offer up many details, but he did claim that the Touch ID sensor will be capacitive and have a “new design” for improved user experience. In other words, it sounds like the power button might look slightly different on this LCD iPhone in order to account for the addition of Touch ID.
It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time Kuo has mentioned a 2021 iPhone with Touch ID, but it is the first time he has said anything about it having an LCD display. We should also point out that the idea of Apple moving the Touch ID sensor to the power button has been floating around for at least a few years now, as our own Zach Epstein was told by multiple sources back in 2017 that Apple was considering moving in this direction with the iPhone 8. That obviously didn’t pan out, but perhaps 2021 is the right time for Touch ID to return.