In a report that will probably surprise no one, KGI Securities' Ming-Chi Kuo says that Samsung will be dropping the in-display fingerprint scanner from the Galaxy Note9. The report comes as Kuo sorts through the industry data and has concluded that Qualcomm and Synaptic's solutions for the scanner aren't up to par with Samsung's standards.
It's hard to imagine a time when people actually made a big deal about having a fingerprint scanner under the display, but back in 2017 people were on the edge of their seats expecting one of the big players to release a FullView no-bezel phone with a fingerprint scanner under the display, where a hardware phone button would usually be found. As the smartphone world raced towards no-bezel phones, it was imperative to find a solution that would allow for biometric unlocking without the traditional front hardware button.
Alas, Apple decided to forego fingerprint scanners entirely after having trouble getting an in-display scanner to work, opting to use facial recognition via the front camera instead. The rest was history. Samsung also dropped the feature in response, even though both Apple and Samsung were heavily favored and expected to produce the feature. Samsung has missed the opportunity with the Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy Note8. And now, they are very likely to be dropping the feature from the upcoming Galaxy Note9. The allure simply isn't there anymore, now that Apple has moved on to Face ID.
That doesn't mean in-display scanners have been forgotten. Vivo is still hard at work making fingerprint scanners under the screen a reality, and they've evolved the concept from an ultrasonic fingerprint scanner at the bottom of the screen to a scanner that spans the entire bottom half of the display, making unlocking all that much easier. Kuo iterates that Samsung likely hasn't given up on the fingerprint scanner and will prefer it to facial recognition over the long term, so we might yet see the feature on the Galaxy S10.
- Images from samsung.com