Why did Samsung make the fingerprint sensor on the S-5 so crappy compared to the 5s?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by easy-peasy, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. easy-peasy macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2014
    With the iPhone 5s you can both wake up and unlock your phone one-handed with a simple press of the home button via you thumb.

    With the Galaxy S-5 you need to have two hands available, wake up the device, THEN swipe your finger on your 2nd hand across and hope that it works (many reviews say it is very unreliable).

    Why would Samsung screw up this very simple, yet extremely useful, one-handed feature? Do they just not have the dedication to quality that Apple does?

    Sometimes it seems like Samsung is more concerned with adding half-baked products and features that don't really work half as good as the leader of the industry : Apple.
  2. skratch77 macrumors 65816

    Mar 20, 2013
    I can hit the home button on my gs4 with ease one handed so I'm nOt sure what your problem is.its the same exact way apple does it.

    Tap home then slide same finger over it
  3. easy-peasy, Mar 7, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2014

    easy-peasy thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2014
    Have you actually seen the S-5? You can't unlock it via fingerprint one-handed all in one button press like you can with the iPhone 5s.

    Edit: Added a video to show that you need two hands to use the fingerprint scanner unlock.
  4. vomhorizon macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2013
    You can, but you have to risk dropping the phone :)..The swipe has to be at a fixed/optimum speed and the finger has to be steady and flat. Most reviewers found it hard to do this with one hand with any sort of confidence.

    Most users going from a 5 inch phone to a 5.2 inch phone should be fairly comfortable using their phones with 2 hands on many occasions although i feel that given the less then optimum biometric unlocking mechanism there may be folks who just dont end up using the feature. This is also not paired with the google play store as far as I can recall so folks that have concerns regarding security would have to type in their google passwords just like in the past.
  5. Lloydbm41 macrumors 68040


    Oct 17, 2013
    Central California
    Isn't there multiple ways to wake the phone with the fingerprint sensor?
  6. vomhorizon macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2013
    No just one way i.e. to swipe over the home button in one direction (from the screen down)..


    You start from that area, hold your finger flat and swipe downwards..You cannot unlock it if you have the phone backwards or sideways (one orientation)..
  7. easy-peasy thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2014
    Exactly. Why does Samsung even come out with half-baked features that don't work nearly as good as Apples? What's the point of coming out with 2nd best?

    With TouchID you can wake up and unlock the phone with a single thumbpress (one handed), while the S-5 requires two hands, waking the phone up, then sliding your finger across and hoping that it works. The convenience of TouchID is pretty much unmatched compared to the clunky junk that the S-5 has.

    They might as well come out with the Motorola Atrix fingerprint sensor :rolleyes:
  8. vomhorizon macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2013
    From what appears to be the case, Samsung has chosen the best available technology to achieve its biometric implementation. Some source point to validity/syap. as the source, and if that is the case then it would be tough to argue that a better solution could have been available. From Samsung's point of view, this is the best that could be done, if users do not like it, they can use other verification methods available, but this does provide a solution for those that require it.

    Authentech's technology, patents and R&D are owned by apple and as such no other company had the ability to provide such a solution in the given time frame. Authentech was also working on implementing finger-print sensors right into the display, and validity is working on the same, even having a galaxy S model prototype using the same technology (i posted the video of it from youtube). It would be interesting to see which company gets that on board (apple or one of validity's partners) first but if biometrics can be put directly on the display it would be an amazing solution given that physical buttons are fairly redundant at least for android.
  9. easy-peasy thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2014
    Well, that answers my question. Thanks for doing it so eloquently. Didn't know the 5s fingerprint sensor was locked down by AuthenTec. Cheers! :)
  10. Robster3 macrumors 68000

    Dec 13, 2012
    Wow, that is lame.
  11. MaximoMark macrumors newbie

    Dec 6, 2013
  12. Bacong macrumors 68020


    Mar 7, 2009
    Westland, Michigan
    I'm gonna agree that the implementation isn't optimal but I'm gonna disagree at your notion of a great fingerprint sensor being "simple"
  13. JaySoul macrumors 68030


    Jan 30, 2008
  14. MikeyMike01 macrumors 6502

    Apr 4, 2010
    Wow, that is far more awful than I expected.
  15. vomhorizon macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2013
    So you want a great finger print sensor to be complex? Simplicity in this case was a reference to easy of use, integration into an area which is familiar to the user etc etc..
  16. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 604

    Oct 27, 2009
    Being that you need to swipe your finger 8 times for initial setup, you should be able to set it up with swiping your thumb sideways holding it with one hand as you normally would.

    Why are all these reviews showing some unrealistic intial setups? Is there a video showing someone trying to do the initial setup naturally?
  17. jamezr macrumors G4


    Aug 7, 2011
    I think it is so funny that you guys are slamming the GS5 fingerprint reader when none of you have used it yet. The phone hasn't even been released yet so NONE of you have had any hands on with the device. If i remember correctly the iPhone 5s had several reports of problems with its fingerprint reader as well before everyone had hands on with it. But before you say how great the iPhone 5s fingerprint reader is…..try searching MR forums and see all the people that re having issues with it…….
    These are just from the MR forums……I haven't even tried to Google it. I think i could find tons more…..



  18. FFR Suspended


    Nov 4, 2007

    The S5 I demoed at the launch was rather flaky.
  19. kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    What was awful about that video? Most of it was setting up the initial print, then actually using it worked perfectly. Other reviews seem to echo that it works great for some people, not so much for others.

    Yep, sliding sideways is what I would try first.

    Personally, I don't use lock screens, so I'm not worried about that part.

    What I like about the S5 software implementation is that you can use your print to secure any videos, photos, recordings, music or files.

    Being able to use it to authenticate PayPal purchases is also quite useful. Now if only they'd let the Amazon app use it too...


    As far as the hardware tech goes, we're so far missing some info, including exactly where it's located. Some say in the bottom part of the display, but perhaps it's between the display and the Home button.

    Apple says its sensor is 500 DPI, but only 88 x 88 pixels. If so, that's an incredibly tiny image to use. No doubt that's why it "learns" by adding more edge image data when it can.

    Samsung is supposedly using a Validity sensor, which from the info available, might be a similiar 508 DPI, but probably much wider ... more like 256 pixels (and of course, as long as the swipe is).

    So in theory, the Samsung sensor has much more info to work with, and should be more secure from false positives.

    As a side note, one good thing about swipe sensors is that they are inherently self-cleaning.
  20. jamezr macrumors G4


    Aug 7, 2011
    Here is a video explaining more of the GS5 fingerprint scanner. You can use your thumb too!
  21. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 604

    Oct 27, 2009
  22. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    It's new technology. Let it grow. Sometimes I have to press five times before my iPhone will recognize my fingers.

    In the future, I bet they will make the area much bigger so you can naturally swipe it without an issue (well on Android phones anyway).
  23. sjinsjca macrumors 68020


    Oct 30, 2008
    Well, there's that. Plus Apple purchased a company with extensive touch-sensor experience, capabilities, technology and intellectual property. Samsung just stuck what they could find in the OEM market on their copycat phone.

    My 5S's touch sensor works brilliantly, and as you point out it's easy to unlock the phone one-handed. Very handy for those dashing-to-the-gate-at-the-airport unlocks.
  24. Technarchy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2012
    The Touch ID process is incredibly smooth. I was highly skeptical when I first saw it, but it's been so seamless for the iPhone experience.
  25. jamezr macrumors G4


    Aug 7, 2011
    Same here….it often takes multiple times to unlock my IP5s. It got so bad i don't even use it anymore.


    So please explain how the Galaxy S5 copies the iPhone……we are all just waiting for this explanation. Since the Galaxy S5 has not been released yet and you have no no hands on with this phone please explain how you know this…...

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