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Leaked picture could show rear-mounted fingerprint scanner on rumored HTC One Max

Check out our review of the HTC One Max smartphone.

It looks like we’re getting closer to the launch of the HTC One Max, judging by the amount of leaks we’re seeing and the information they contain. The latest is a picture showing the One Max alongside its brothers-in-arms, the One and One Mini. What’s intriguing is we’re seeing the trio from behind, and the One Max has a big, black square beneath the camera lens. What could it be? How about a fingerprint reader?

Fingerprint sensors have been in the news for a few months now, thanks to rumors one will be fitted to the next iPhone, but this is the first time it has been associated with the One Max. In case you’re not aware, a fingerprint reader adds another level of security to your phone, in the same way they do on laptops. On a phone, they can be set to unlock the device, open an app, or authorize payments.

If Apple fits a sensor to the iPhone, many believe it will be inside the Home button, but fitting on the back of a phone is just as convenient. Swiping a thumb across it shouldn’t be too awkward, provided it’s sensitive enough. Making use of the space below the camera lens also appears to be in vogue at the moment, thanks to LG starting the ball rolling with the rear-mounted volume controls on its G2 smartphone.

What else can we learn from the picture? Well, the One Max’s screen is going to be massive. It looks to be at least an inch longer and quite a bit wider than the 4.7-inch HTC One, so the rumors regarding a 5.9-inch screen size are most likely accurate. Other possible One Max specs include an UltraPixel camera and a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor.

So, who’s going to be first to launch a phone secured using a fingerprint scanner, Apple or HTC? Apple is rumored to be unveiling the iPhone 5S on September 10, but HTC may announce the One Max at the IFA show around September 4. However, we’re willing to bet Apple will have the iPhone 5S on sale before HTC can get the One Max into stores.

If you’re wondering what else fingerprint scanners can do, take a look at the one we tried out at Mobile World Congress earlier this year.