Microsoft has just received a fingerprint scanner patent with gesture recognition features massively inspired by a similar technology used by Google known as the directional swipe component. It is installed on Google’s Pixel phone and enables Google Pixel owners to carry out basic operations like display notifications by using gestures and swiping their finger on the scanner in a certain direction.
Microsoft filed for a patent back in June 2015 called “Biometric Gestures” and the latest was discovered by PatentlyApple. Also, the eagerly-anticipated Surface Phone is all set to be launched next year, as Redmond has stated. So, Microsoft getting the patent really makes sense.
How the fingerprint scanner works:
A fingerprint scanner is integrated into the screen and would allow users to use three different gestures for a series of pre-defined tasks. It begins with the device being unlocked, of course. The three gestures pre-programmed into the sensor are:
- A simple tap
- Tap and hold or tap and rest.
- Tap and slide or tap and swipe.
Each haptic signal is assigned to trigger a specific event or a certain level of access. For instance, device unlock, show appointments or quick access to notifications.
“A computing device includes a biometric sensor, such as a fingerprint touch sensor, that is configured to detect gesture input. When gesture input is received from a user, the biometric sensor detects biometric characteristics (e.g., a fingerprint) of the user and determines a gesture (e.g., a tap, touch and hold, or swipe) based on the gesture input,” Microsoft explains in the abstract section of the patent.
Biometric fingerprint scanning, or in-screen scanning, is now more or less a standard feature in every smartphone. It’s a feature that Samsung has been frantically trying to emulate in their devices.
As far as Microsoft is concerned, they’d need to overcome some massive technological hurdles for integrating the contemporary fingerprint sensor into their device display. And even if they somehow succeed, they would still need some selling points to attain a decent consumer base. As the patent is already running on a number of platforms, Windows 10 certainly isn’t contributing to any technological innovation here.
If Microsoft manages to add some originality to the gesture technology, the probable device could have a lot of potential in the mobile market.