Getting the fingerprint sensor inside a display has been the next logical step for years (unless you're Apple). It has proven hard to crack the code on that, though. As displays keep getting bigger, it's time for someone to take the plunge, and Synaptics says it has the technology to make it happen. Its new Clear ID in-display fingerprint sensors are coming soon in partnership with a "top 5" smartphone OEM. That's a bit cryptic.

The Clear ID sensors (FS9500) work just like existing fingerprint sensors—you tap, and the sensor immediately recognizes your fingerprint. However, it does that from under the display glass and OLED panel. This allows for slimmer bezels without moving the sensor to the back of the phone. Synaptics contends that consumers prefer sensors on the front of the phone. Consumers are wrong, but okay.

Synaptics claims the sensors are already in mass production with a smartphone maker, but it's not saying who. It does use the term "infinity display" to refer to low-bezel phones, and that's a Samsung term. However, all Synaptics can confirm is that its partner is a "top 5" smartphone OEM. If we're talking worldwide, that's Samsung, Huawei, Apple, Oppo, and Xiaomi. Apple is obviously out, but any of the others are plausible.

Press Release

Synaptics Brings World's First In-Display Fingerprint Sensors for Smartphones to Mass Production with a Top Five OEM
Clear ID Optical Sensors are Faster, More Convenient and Secure than Alternative Biometrics SAN JOSE, Calif. – December 12, 2017 – Synaptics Incorporated (NASDAQ: SYNA), the leading developer of human interface solutions, today announced mass production with a top five OEM of its new Clear ID FS9500 family of optical in-display fingerprint sensors. Designed for smartphones with infinity displays, Synaptics' Clear ID in-display fingerprint sensors magically activate in the display only when needed. Clear ID is faster than alternative biometrics such as 3D facial, highly-secure with SentryPoint technology, and very convenient with one-touch/one-step biometric authentication directly in the touchscreen display area of smartphones.
The new Synaptics Clear ID optical fingerprint sensors deliver one-touch high-resolution scanning through full cover glass and enable sleek, button-free, bezel-free infinity displays. Synaptics' highperformance Clear ID FS9500 optical solution excels with wet, dry and cold fingers, and since it's protected by glass, is durable, scratchproof and waterproof. In-display fingerprint technology allows users to securely unlock the device in situations including while it's sitting on the table, at any angle, or while in a car mount. Synaptics' Clear ID performance is twice as fast as 3D facial recognition and requires only one touch to access your smartphone.
Serious Security:
Synaptics optical fingerprint sensors are available with SentryPoint technology, offering OEMs a widerange of unique and highly secure authentication features including: Quantum Matcherfor adaptive fingerprint template matching and authentication; PurePrint anti-spoof technology to examine fingerprint images using unique artificial intelligence technology to distinguish between spoofs and actual fingers; and SecureLink which combines support for TLS protocol with ECC authentication and AES encryption.
"Consumers prefer fingerprint authentication on the front of the phone, and with the industry quickly shifting to bezel-free OLED infinity displays, the natural placement of the fingerprint sensor is in the display itself," said Kevin Barber, senior vice president and general manager, Mobile Division, Synaptics. "Synaptics' Clear ID fingerprint sensors are faster, more convenient, and more secure than alternative biometrics, and this optical technology represents a major innovation shift and opportunity for the smartphone market."