Apple Applies for Patent on Fingerprint Sensor Packaging System

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    [​IMG]


    The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office today published an Apple patent application (via AppleInsider) filed in February of this year which addresses a system for packaging fingerprint sensors alongside conductive bezels in a single structure. The bezels deliver a small amount of electrical current to the user's finger, allowing the fingerprint to be read by the sensor.
    [​IMG]
    Fingerprint sensor package with sensor die (14/16) and conductive bezels (18)
    The patent application goes on to describe some of the issues with previous fingerprint sensor assembly methods:
    [​IMG]
    Cross section of finger on integrated sensor package
    While the patent application was filed in February of this year, it actually appears to date much further back, as it is a continuation of a previous patent application filed in March 2010 and originally assigned to UPEK, Inc. That company was a 2004 spinoff of STMicroelectronics' fingerprint biometrics business. UPEK merged with AuthenTec in September 2010, and Apple ultimately gained the rights to the intellectual property when it acquired AuthenTec last year. Only one of the three inventors on the patent, Giovanni Gozzini, continues to work for Apple today.

    Apple has been rumored to be adding a fingerprint sensor to its upcoming iPhone 5S as a differentiating feature compared to the iPhone 5. Rumors and speculation about Apple's interest in fingerprint sensor technology have been driven largely by its acquisition of Authentec, although evidence of the company's interest in fingerprint recognition dates back considerably further.

    Article Link: Apple Applies for Patent on Fingerprint Sensor Packaging System
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    dragje

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    #2
    Nice, I'm sure there will be software add-ons for this functionality. For example that you iPad or iPhone will play a barking sound when your cat is touching the device. Or when your girlfriend touches your iPhone screen that this device will send you an sms or something like that. Or what about a finger identification counter? One press on a button and it tells you how many different people have touched the device...

    Yes, you're right....I'm bored right now..
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Klae17

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    #3
    This will be useful for buying stuff (no more passwords) and Find my iPhone.
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Jazwire

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    #4
    Given the latest government snooping news, not sure I want my fingerprints easily available.
     
  5. macrumors regular

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    #5
    I bet we don't see it until the iPhone 6. Wait, that's going to have NFC. I bet we don't see it until the iPhone 6s.
     
  6. macrumors member

    Joined:
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    #6
    I realise this is a long shot, but please make it happen in the 5S.

    Entering the passcode may be a first world problem but it is nevertheless tedious. The more of a rush I'm in, the more likely I am to get the darn thing wrong.
     
  7. macrumors 68000

    SPUY767

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    #7
    In 2 years when everyone is doing fingerprint scanners like this, it will suddenly have been obvious.
     
  8. macrumors member

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    #8
    LOL, I am pretty sure the government already has most ppl’s finger print already.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    lolkthxbai

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    #9
    and a standard technology that should be fairly and reasonably licensed by non-discriminatory terms....

    ----------

    in before someone says "What if I burned my fingertips and i don't have fingerprints anymore!"
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Jazwire

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    #10
    True, prob blood, hair & sperm samples as well.

    Never been fingerprinted, that i know of. :eek:

    But don't wanna make it that easy for them, either.
     
  11. macrumors 603

    Rocketman

    #11
    I take it is doesn't merely sense a finger, but a particular finger. Therefore some sort of fingerprint format. Is this essentially a physical contact scanner?
     
  12. macrumors 603

    kas23

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    #12
    Although 99% of people have nothing to worry about, it is not "if" but "when" will Apple be subpoenaed for fingerprint data. Then again, if a law enforcement agency wants fingerprints, they could easily just request them from the individual, but this is going to make fingerprint searches easier on the grand scale.
     
  13. macrumors member

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    #13
    I got fingerprinted as part of a merit badge activity in boy scouts. The cop who was doing it duped all these 12 year olds into doing it because no one thinks they're going to be a criminal at that age.

    Oh well, here I am 15 years later and I've never had to worry about it.
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    SPUY767

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    #14
    They are not patenting anything to do with the technology. This patent is in no way shape or form FRAND.
     
  15. macrumors 68040

    the8thark

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    #15
    You want to use someone's iPad? You must have their finger. Doesn't matter if that finger is dead or alive (or even attached tot he hand it came from). I'm sure the criminal types would be aware of this. For very sensitive data.
     
  16. macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Second that for swipe to unlock. I want to interact with the home button and have the phone wake. For you high security clearance types, you could avoid having to interact with your countermeasures.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    bacaramac

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    #17
    As I stated in another thread on Find My iPhone. Apple needs to modify the software to disable the ability to wipe iPhone or shut it off until either iTunes ID/Password are entered or user unlocks phone by entering pass code.

    Couple that with a fingerprint sensor and you can have pass code with simplicity. That way if phone is lost or stolen you can track it until battery dies. Should stop thieves or at least catch them.
     
  18. macrumors 68030

    rjohnstone

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    #18
    Motorola did it two years ago on the Atrix. ;)
    Nice feature, just poor location of the sensor. (it was integrated into the power button)

    [​IMG]
     
  19. macrumors G4

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    #19
    Don't worry. Fingerprint sensors don't store finger prints. Just like Mac OS X does not store your password. In both cases the data are "hashed" and only the hash is saved. If some one looks at a hash they can not know the password or finger print.

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    I bet you will see this technology on door handles too. Keys are a hassel to cary around. Why not program the doors on your door and house to only open for the "right" people. No "swipe" the entire part of the handle where you grab it could be a sensor.
     
  20. macrumors newbie

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    #20
    "Now iCloud can remember your account names, passwords, and credit card numbers for you. And Safari can enter them automatically whenever you need to sign in to a site or shop online."

    ...but if all of that is behind a single weak password, it's still not secure at all. If it's all behind a fingerprint, otoh...

    I fully expect iCloud Keychain and Passbook to work hand in hand with a fingerprint sensor for security. And maybe an upgraded Passbook that works directly with credit cards for pos purchases as well. Hopefully in iPhone 5S.
     
  21. macrumors regular

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    #21
  22. macrumors 6502a

    Jazwire

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    #22
  23. macrumors regular

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    #23

    oh boy! here we go with the whole "Apple is just copying" thing again
     
  24. macrumors 68040

    D.T.

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    #24
    There's two main variants: one is basically an optical scanner that images your fingerprint, the other is capacitive, that also gets the fingerprint, but images using electrical impulses to create a contour/feature map based on depth (kind of like sonar).

    In either case, there's a large sampling of various attributes, these are stored, then the scanner can match just a portion of the original scan to a current scan, which is how modern scanners will work with damaged/distorted fingerprints.
     
  25. macrumors 68030

    rjohnstone

    Joined:
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    #25
    Oh boy, here we go with getting defensive about seeing facts!
    Seriously... grow up. :rolleyes:

    Yes... in this instance, Apple is copying a feature that has been used on a mobile phone before.

    Let's just hope their implementation is better or it will disappear just as fast as the one on the Atrix did.
    Motorola dropped the feature on the Atrix 2.
     

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