Apple iPhone 8 to ditch home button for screen inbuilt fingerprint sensor: Report

A newly published patent claims that the next-gen iPhone could replace the home button

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Highlights

    • Apple to replace home button with function area.
    • iPhone 8 to come with a radical redesign.
    • iPhone 8 expected to feature 4.7-inch form factor, bigger battery.

A newly published patent revealed that Apple is working on placing the fingerprint sensor beneath the screen on its next-gen iPhone wiping off the need for a home button.

The patent was originally filed by Apple acquisition LuxVue, a company that specialises in power-efficient micro-LED displays. The newly granted patent details on how the device could use LEDs placed underneath the display that will detect finger position and scan its surface to read a fingerprint. The fingerprint detection cold use infrared emitters and sensors that sit alongside RGB light emitting diodes within the display.

The Cupertino tech company in the new patent stated, “When the fingerprint is placed upon the transparent substrate, the sensing IR diodes within the display panel sense patterned IR light reflected off grooves of the fingerprint surface.”

“This patterned IR light is relayed to the output processor as a bitmap where it is processed to determine the fingerprint surface’s unique pattern. Because the display panel can sense IR light, the display panel is able to perform surface profile determination when the display panel is not emitting visible light,” Apple added.

The patent explains the use of a gamut of LED sensors under the display so that it works both as a capacitive touchscreen and a fingerprint sensor, a function similar to Touch ID home button in iPhone.

Apple’s 10th anniversary iPhone 8 or iPhone ‘X’ could be the biggest release from the iPhone maker. We have been hearing a lot of speculation about the new smartphone, from a radical redesign to featuring a glass body with a steel frame, improved camera, and wireless charging. The phone is also expected to feature an edge-to-edge display presumably the OLED screen. Apple’s popular analyst Ming Chi Kuo’s latest note that reiterates with Apple’s newly reassigned patent claim the upcoming iPhone to replace home button with ‘function area’.

Kuo further in its report says that with the new function area housing the virtual buttons and other actions, the usable display will real estate is expected to be around 5.15-inches. However, the overall front face of the phone is expected to feature a 5.8-inch display.

Earlier this week on Wednesday, Kuo cited a note claiming that the iPhone 8 5.8-inch OLED model will have a screen dimension similar to the 4.7-inch iPhone 7 model but will pack a bigger battery. He mentioned that the phone will come with stacked logic board, called a substrate-like PCB mainboard. The stacked SLP is expected to provide more internal space for a larger battery and other integral components thus sustaining a thin overall form factor for the new device.

But as it the new iPhone is months away from unearthing in the real platform, and just like Apple’s any other patents which remain unclear whether or not it will integrate the technology on its new product we will have to wait until Apple makes an official statement of such implementation.