iPhone 6 fingerprint scanner detailed in patent filing

News Richard Goodwin 10:25, 21 Jun 2013

iPhone 6 fingerprint scanner will be integrated directly into the bezel, new patent listings suggest

New patent filings suggest the oft-rumoured fingerprint scanner Apple has been working on will be fused inside the bezel of the iPhone 6, reports suggest. 

We say the iPhone 6 because recent leaked images of the iPhone 5S show nothing remotely resembling this feature. Increasingly it seems the iPhone 5S – like the iPhone 4S – will be an incremental update, adding in only a few snippets of updated hardware and some new imaging capabilities. 

The iPhone 6 will be the big one – or, the update people have been waiting for since 2012 – and is expected to carry a larger display, different chassis design, and – if Apple’s recent patent is anything to go by – a fingerprint scanner built into its bezel.

Apple has reportedly been working on fingerprint technology since 2009, but it is only very recently that advancements have been made with the technology allowing for its potential inclusion inside iPhones, iPads and MacBooks. 

‘By encasing both the bezel and the sensor die in the encapsulation structure, the elements may be brought closer together than otherwise possible. In addition, the encapsulation structure physically protects the bezel and sensor die, and in particular maintains the spacing there between in a fashion that isn't possible by currently known device designs,’ reports Patently Apple.

Reports suggest the integrated scanner, although infused inside the bezel, will create a slight bump in the iPhone 6’s exterior. Whether this is an actual design feature to make it more tactile or a limitation of the technology’s integration remains to be seen. 

It’s also worth noting that Apple acquired fingerprint technology specialist AuthenTech in late-2012. Combine that with today’s patent listing and you have a pretty good argument for the technology appearing inside Apple’s next significant iPhone update. 

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