Take that, eye scrolling: iPhone 5S said to have fingerprint scanner
11th Mar 2013 | 21:19
Apple making NFC more secure with fingerprint tech
The latest Apple rumors point - literally - to new security features built into the iPhone 5S.
According to the sometimes-questionable China Times, Taiwanese company Chipbond is developing touch display drivers for the next-gen iPhone to support both NFC and fingerprint scanning.
The rumor doesn't come as much of a surprise, especially following a recent Apple patent that would equip future iPhones with a fingerprint reader next to the home button.
Notably, Apple's patent described a liquid crystal security window for scanning fingerprints, which fits with Chipbond's specialty in developing LCD drivers.
iPhone 5S - the S stands for security
Rumors of fingerprint scanners and NFC support in Apple's devices trace back to last July when Apple bought mobile security firm AuthenTec for $356 million (UK£238 million, UA$346 million).
AuthenTec's specialization was in fingerprint scanning technology, a specialty shared by biosecurity firm Microlatch, which Apple has reportedly also been in talks with since last year.
While fingerprint scanning could be used as added security to unlock a device, it's also rumored to be a key part of the next iPhone's NFC support by asking for fingerprint confirmation to make payments more secure.
Apple's actions speak to its interest in using fingerprint scanning and NFC technology in its devices, and if the rumors are true and the chips are already in production, then we may be looking at a key iPhone 5S security feature.
How this special features stacks up to the Samsung Galaxy S4's reported eye scrolling tech, we may not know for a few months. But fingerprints vs. eyeballs could make for an interesting dichotomy between the two firms.