Qualcomm has announced the development of new fingerprint scanners that work through displays, thick glass, and metal with underwater operation, heartbeat and blood flow detection.
The next generation Qualcomm Fingerprint Sensors were unveiled at Mobile World Congress Shanghai 2017. The suite of features consists of sensors for Display, Glass and Metal, detection of directional gestures, and underwater fingerprint match and device wake-up. It is also the first commercially announced integrated ultrasonic-based mobile solution to detect heart beat and blood flow for improved mobile authentication experiences.
“We are excited to announce Qualcomm Fingerprint Sensors because they can be designed to support sleeker, cutting-edge form factors, unique mobile authentication experiences, and enhanced security authentication,” said Seshu Madhavapeddy, vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “This provides OEMs and operators with the ability to offer truly distinct, differentiated devices with added value on truly groundbreaking new devices.”
Qualcomm Fingerprint Sensor for Display is the mobile industry’s first commercially announced multi-functional ultrasonic solution capable of scanning through OLED display stacks of up to 1200um, along with enrolling and matching, and Qualcomm Fingerprint Sensors for Glass and Metal are the first commercially announced to scan through up to 800 µm of cover glass and up to 650 µm of aluminum, an improvement over the previous generation’s 400 µm capability for glass or metal.
The fingerprint sensors for glass and metal will be available to OEMs this month and should arrive in commercial devices in the first half of 2018. The sensors for displays are expected to be available to OEMs for evaluation in the fourth quarter of 2017.
Apple is in the midst of a big legal battle with Qualcomm over its LTE modems and so it seems unlikely the company would consider its technology for future generation iPhones.