In the never-ending race to new features in smartphones, one particular achievement has remained out of reach for the world's device makers: in-display fingerprint scanning. A small number of phones exclusively offered in China that claim the capability, but Apple and Samsung notably remain absent from the conversation.
However, that could all change very soon, if a recent report is to be believed.
A report in South Korea's The Bell claims Samsung has not only already finalized the Galaxy S10's design, but that it will include a fingerprint sensor embedded into the screen. The company is rumored to be working alongside Synaptics, Qualcomm and Aegis Tech to bring the highly-requested feature to market. If true, it'll be Samsung's first device with an in-display scanner, and easily the biggest handset to launch with such technology.
Synaptics' involvement is notable. That's the company that provides sensors like the ones used in the X20 Plus UD from Chinese phone maker Vivo. As we saw at this year's CES, that phone has a fingerprint sensor embedded right under the screen.
The Bell also reported that the Galaxy S10 will rival Apple's Face ID depth-sensing camera with a system of Samsung's own. That addition would be a massive boon for the company's Intelligent Scan technology, which currently relies on a combination of two-dimensional facial recognition and iris scanning, and still isn't as secure as Apple's authentication in the iPhone X. Besides device unlocking, three-dimensional recognition would presumably be used to verify payments through Samsung Pay.
MORE: Help Me, Tom's Guide: Galaxy S9 Fingerprint Unlock Explained
In other respects, The Bell's article suggests the Galaxy S10 won't bring about a massive redesign on par with the transition from the Galaxy S7 to the Galaxy S8. Samsung looks to repeat the basic look and feel of the just-released Galaxy S9, which would be three generations old by the time Samsung's 2019 flagship launches.
While the report goes that Samsung has already committed to a plan for the Galaxy S10, there's still a lot of time for things to change. New Galaxy S models are typically announced in February or March, which leaves us a little more than a year until that phone's release. You can expect rumors to ramp up considerably throughout 2018, and our always-updated roundup is an excellent way to keep on top of news as it breaks.
Photo Credit: Adam Ismail/Tom's Guide