Qualcomm has officially announced the latest version of its in-display ultrasonic fingerprint reader, dubbed 3D Sonic Sensor Gen 2.
The new technology seems to improve the original model in several ways. It also offers a larger sensor area as well as faster processing, making it possible to implement the sensor to unlock the phone even faster.
According to Qualcomm, the new 3D Sonic Sensor Gen 2 sensor measures 8mm x 8mm compared to the 4mm x 9mm surface area of the first generation model. This means that users get up to 77 percent more floor space.
When in use, the wider surface means it will be easier to accurately place your finger on the sensor. It also allows the sensor to collect more data with each scan.
When a larger sensor is paired with faster processing, Qualcomm promises that fingerprint scanning to unlock the phone will be 50 percent faster thanks to the 3D Sonic Sensor Gen 2.
As a reminder, Qualcomm’s first-generation ultrasonic sensor 3D Sonic Sensor debuted in the Galaxy S10 flagship smartphone lineup in 2018.
At the time, almost all other display readers used optical scanners, which were said to be slower and not as reliable as the new ultrasonic technology.
However, the sensor encountered several problems, including a highly problematic security hole that when used with certain screen protectors caused the reader to unlock the phone with almost all fingerprints. Samsung will resolve this issue through a software update later.
Qualcomm announced the 3D Sonic Max later in 2019, which happens to be a larger version of the first-generation sensor with a surface area of 20mm x 30mm.
Qualcomm revealed that the first batch of mobile phones equipped with the new second-generation 3D acoustic wave sensor should be available in early 2021.
The company did not disclose any specific release details, but there are speculations that it will be released on the Galaxy S21, which is expected to be released on January 14.