Report: Samsung Galaxy S5's fingerprint sensor unlocks more than mere lock screens

samsung s5

We've heard the speculation about Samsung looking at iris recognition for the upcoming Galaxy S5. Now, the rumor mill says the next hot biometric technology planned for Samsung's flagship phone will be scanning your fingerprint, not your eyes—although SamMobile's report on the Galaxy S5's rumored fingerprint recognition suggests it ain't quite Apple's Touch ID.

The fingerprint sensor built into the iPhone 5S is used as a limited security mechanism. Touch ID can unlock an iPhone or be used as a password for making purchases from iTunes and the App Store, but that's it.

Samsung's implementation would see far wider use, SamMobile says. As with Touch ID, Samsung's fingerprint sensor would let you unlock your device, but it would also be available for other features built into the device.

More than mere lock screens

You could use a specific finger to unlock a personal mode that keeps certain apps, widgets, and other content separate from the rest of the phone. This sounds like an addition to a common enterprise feature that puts a firewall between personal and corporate data on the same phone.

Fingerprints could also be used to sign into certain websites or even as an app shortcut, according to the rumors. The S5 would accept up to eight different fingerprints that could be assigned to the device's various fingerprint-friendly features.

Samsung's fingerprint sensor would also operate differently than Apple's, which requires you to press and hold your finger over the iPhone sensor. The Galaxy S5 version, SamMobile says, would require a slow and steady swipe across the physical button on the front of the device. As you swipe, a real-time image of your fingerprint would reportedly appear on the phone's display.

Follow the leader

If Samsung does implement a fingerprint sensor into the S5, the company would be the third major smartphone maker to do so, following Apple and HTC.

HTC already offers a number of fingerprint sensing features similar to the S5 rumors in the One Max phablet. HTC's implementation allows you to use up to three fingerprints to unlock the phone, launch the camera, open a third-party app, or return to the home screen.

The Galaxy S5 is expected to be unveiled next week during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

This story, "Report: Samsung Galaxy S5's fingerprint sensor unlocks more than mere lock screens" was originally published by TechHive.

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