When Apple launched the iPhone X and its successors, it felt like Touch ID for the iPhone was pretty much dead, and that facial recognition is the future that Apple will be embracing. However, interestingly enough, not everyone thinks that. In fact, various patent filings in the past show that Apple is still very much exploring new approaches and applications for fingerprint scanners.
The latest patent discovered by Patently Apple could be one of the company’s most radical and ambitious plans to date. For starters, it resides under the display of the device, but unlike Apple’s rivals that rely on ultrasonic methods of scanning the fingerprint, Apple’s patent suggests that pin-hole cameras placed under the display would be used to scan the fingerprint.
The patent also shows how the area used to scan the finger is rather large and encompasses almost the entire display. This means that instead of only being able to scan in a particular portion of the screen, users can place their fingers pretty much anywhere. In addition to being used for security, the patent also describes how it could also be used to monitor vital signs.
Given Apple’s interest in health, we wouldn’t be surprised that there could be health-related features tied-in with this patent as well. That being said, we probably shouldn’t get too excited just yet as it is only a patent and there is no guarantee that Apple will make it a reality. However, the frequency of these discoveries does suggest that the company hasn’t quite given up on fingerprint security just yet.