How Apple could use a fingerprint scan to unlock your iPhone

Imagine with a fingerprint scanner under the screen – rather than using a code or swipe, have your fingerprint scanned to unlock. Nifty!


Apple(s AAPL) has stayed quiet — as usual — on what it’s been up to with AuthenTec since it acquired the mobile security company a year ago. But a patent filing offers some insight into what the two are partnering on: fingerprint sensors that can be embedded into displays.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday published a patent application attributed to Apple based on work done by AuthenTec’s co-founder, as noted by AppleInsider this morning. The patent is is for a chip that can be embedded in a mobile device that will sense fingerprints on a display as a way of authenticating a user before giving them access to a device.

Apple’s patent sounds like it will allow the chip to be inserted in the device, but gives Apple’s device engineers more room to work with than traditional biometric security solutions. From the application:

When using a semiconductor…

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