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Ny Apple Patent beskriver fingeravtrykkssensor, der kunne fungere gennem display

Ny Apple Patent beskriver fingeravtrykkssensor, der kunne fungere gennem display

De amerikanske patent- og varemærkestyrelsen i dag bevilget Apple et patent, der beskriver a røre ID sensor which could effectively detect and read a user’s fingerprints through other components of the smartphone, “such as display stacks and touch screens” (via AppleInsider). Selvom den går uspecificeret, tilpasses teknologien med de nuværende rygter for iPhone 8, som forventes at fjern hjemme-knappen til gode og integrere forskellige stykker af smartphone direkte i displayet, herunder Touch ID.

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Described in the new patent, there are many reasons Apple is looking to integrate Touch ID into the iPhone’s screen, “not the least of which is an interest in avoiding assigning valuable surface space exclusively to an component that may only be used briefly during the process of identifying the user.” But the company still had to face multiple issues when building the new technology, namely a “blurring of the electric field” that brought about a loss of resolution of the fingerprint images as they were being transferred through the space between the Touch ID sensor and the iPhone’s screen.

To combat the gap between where the user places their finger, and the technology reading the fingerprint data under the display, Apple’s patent proposes the use of electrostatic lenses, which are described as including “one or more patterned conductive layer(s).” In an example laid out by the patent, the position, relative voltage, and shapes of the patterned conductive layer or layers can be altered to shape the electric field specifically associated with the user’s fingerprint, and the information can be held “in the region between the contact surface of the capacitive fingerprint sensor and the array of capacitive sensing elements.”

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Apple’s patent aims to reduce the spread of a fingerprint’s electric field using electrostatic lenses

The collected data would help improve the resolution of the user’s fingerprint, despite the distance between the Touch ID sensing module and the place on the iPhone display where they place their finger. In the patent, Apple notes that the specific setting and location for these electrostatic lenses depend on the “geometry of the consumer electronics device and the effects of any intervening components,” but touchscreens and display stacks are mentioned by name multiple times.

Som det er almindeligt med patenter, er det uklart, om den elektrostatiske linse teknologi vil vise sig i enhver fremtidig Apple-enhed overhovedet, langt mindre end et sæt til debut på mindre end et år, men dets beskrivende evne til at brændstof one of the iPhone 8’s biggest rumors er interessant alt det samme. Apple synes at have arbejdet på patentet i et par år nu, da det oprindeligt blev indleveret i september 9, 2014, med opfinder kredit til Jean-Marie Bussat.

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