We expect the Samsung Galaxy S23 phones to bring a number of upgrades with them, from cameras to processors, but there’s obviously one key spec that won’t see an upgrade: the fingerprint sensor.
Reliable leakage Ice universe (opens in new tab) appears to have caught a layer of protective glass for the Galaxy S23 Ultra model and reveals a spot where the fingerprint sensor will be located – a spot that’s the same size as the Samsung Galaxy S22 handset.
There’s nothing particularly wrong with the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S22, but as Notebookcheck (opens in new tab) points out, there was hope that the sensor on the Galaxy S23 would be bigger and better. Now that seems unlikely to happen.
Same old same old
In particular, the Galaxy S22 is equipped with the capable Qualcomm 3D Sonic Sensor Gen 2, while the Galaxy S23 is believed to bring Qualcomm 3D Sonic Max – a sensor that is more accurate, more secure and can scan two fingers simultaneously.
Perhaps Samsung decided it wanted to stick with the same fingerprint sensor to keep costs down, or perhaps the original rumor of a fingerprint sensor upgrade was unexpected from the start – but this is an upgrade that now seems unlikely.
You could argue that fingerprint sensors aren’t the most important thing on a smartphone, but considering how often we unlock our phones every day, they can have a significant impact on the user experience.
Resolution: fingerprint sensor upgrades
Go to Qualcomm 3D Sonic Max official website (opens in new tab) and you will see that there are improvements in many areas. It’s the largest ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor to date, using sound waves to scan fingerprints at a fast pace and with incredibly good resolution.
It’s much harder to forge a fingerprint with this technology compared to standard optical fingerprint sensors, Qualcomm says. It will scan fingerprints faster when they’re wet, and because of the acoustic scanning it develops, it’s more reliable when your fingers aren’t perfectly clean either.
The larger surface allows two fingers to be scanned simultaneously, and the sensor has an error rate of 1 in 250,000, according to its manufacturer. However, based on the leaked protective glass we’ve seen appearing online, we’ll have to wait until at least 2024 to see it on a Samsung Galaxy S flagship.
It’s not all bad news, though, because the Galaxy S23 is set to bring with it quite a few improvements over its predecessor. Already this week we heard that the handset will carry a customized version of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset that provides even more performance.