Put my finger where? New LG tech hides fingerprint sensors away

lg innotek under glass fingerprint sensor
The days of having a fingerprint sensor you can actually see on a smartphone may be coming to an end. LG Innotek, the division of the company that produces components and materials, has integrated a fingerprint sensor into a glass front panel, but from underneath the sheet rather than in front or on top. This means it’s completely hidden away, more resistant to damage, but crucially has the same level of accuracy expected from a regular exposed fingerprint sensor.

Fingerprint sensors on most phones are immediately obvious, due to being fitted inside buttons on the front like the iPhone or Galaxy S7, or into a recessed square or circular cutouts on the back of a phone, like most Huawei devices, or the LG G5. LG Innotek flipped the glass front panel around, etched out a section just 0.3mm thick, and placed a fingerprint sensor inside.

Turn the glass over, and there’s nothing there to indicate a fingerprint sensor is hidden away, giving a sleeker, less cluttered design, and opportunities to mark out where to place a finger or thumb using subtle graphics or markings. The sensor is protected from water damage, and the surface is less likely to be scratched, without the use of sapphire crystal covers like that used on the iPhone’s Touch ID button. LG also dropped a 130 gram steel ball from a height of 20cm to prove the thin glass’s toughness.

LG Innotek Under Glass Sensor Finger

LG claims the invisible sensor has a false acceptance rating (FAR) of 0.002 percent. This is the likelihood of it accepting someone else’s fingerprint as your own. While great for our own security, this is an essential if LG wants to use the new fingerprint sensor on Android phones. A FAR rating no greater than 0.002 percent is a prerequisite for sensors used with Android 6.0 Marshmallow, according to Google’s documentation.

While the new under glass fingerprint sensor has been announced, and LG Innotek has developed a special adhesive to stick the sensor to the underside of the panel, there’s no indication when it may go into mass production, ready for use on an actual phone. LG’s recently revealed the G5, but we’re expecting it to show off a sequel to the V10 later in the year. Perhaps the phablet will mark the debut of this exciting new innovation? We’ll keep you updated.

Product Review

Google’s Pixel 3 is a hair away from pocket-sized perfection

Google’s Pixel 3 smartphone is the best Android phone you can buy. It doesn’t have the best looks or the best hardware, but you’ll be hard pressed to find better software and unique A.I. functionalities.
Product Review

Mediocre battery and a big notch slight Google's otherwise perfect Pixel phone

Google’s Pixel 3 XL has two big flaws: The gigantic notch on the front, and mediocre battery life. That being said, this is the best Android experience you can find in a smartphone today.
Product Review

It's so fast it has a clip-on fan. But the Asus ROG phone isn't just for gamers

Is a gaming smartphone only something a mobile gamer should consider buying? In the case of the Asus ROG Phone, the good news is the device is so capable, and a genuinely impressive all-rounder, that everyone should take a closer look…
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Mobile

Upcoming Galaxy S10 may support 8K video and have Neural Processing Unit

While we still may be months away from an announcement, there's no doubt about it: Samsung is working hard on its successor to the Galaxy S9. Here's everything we know about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S10.
Music

Here's our head-to-head comparison of Pandora and Spotify

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.
Mobile

Netflix is testing a cheap mobile-only subscription tier in some markets

Netflix is trying to reach potential subscribers in emerging markets. To that end, the company has begun rolling out a cheaper, mobile-only subscription tier, which comes at around $4 per month -- half the price of the Basic subscription…
Mobile

Samsung will reportedly announce its folding smartphone at MWC in February

Samsung has been showcasing bendable display tech for a few years and now a folding smartphone might finally arrive. The Galaxy X, or perhaps the Galaxy F, may be the company's first example. Here's everything we know about it.
Mobile

Check out 30 of the best iPhone games you need to be playing

The iPhone has some of our favorite games available for any mobile platform. Here are the best iPhone games for every big-name genre, whether you're into puzzles, strategy, or something else entirely.
Mobile

Text messages are disappearing on Pixel 3s, but a fix is on the way

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are arguably the best Android phones out there right now -- but they aren't perfect. Users have reported a number of issues and problems related to the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Here's how to fix them.
Mobile

Get ready for more V-series phones: LG trademarks names up to the V90

It looks like we should get ready for more LG V-series phones. LG has trademarked names for the LG V50 all the way up to the LG V90. We may have to wait some time before we see these phones; the next LG flagship is expected to be the LG G8.
Home Theater

What is MHL, exactly, and how does it work with your TV?

There are more ways to mirror your smartphone or tablet to your TV than you might think. Check out our rundown of MHL for everything you need to know about the wired protocol and its myriad uses.
Deals

All the best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2018

Amazon may be an online-only retailer, but that doesn’t mean its Black Friday sales are anything to sniff at. In fact, due to its online status, Amazon has huge flexibility with the range of products and deals it can offer. Here's our…
Deals

Black Friday 2018: The best deals so far

Black Friday is the biggest shopping holiday of the year, and it will be here before you know it. If you can't wait until November 23 to start formulating a shopping plan, we've got you covered.