Samsung Galaxy S8 Iris Scanner Reportedly More Advanced Than FBI’s Fingerprint Tech


Both the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, unveiled this past March, take on a brand-new form of the traditional smartphone design, sporting a nearly bezel-less display that strikes and awes. The display's so big, in fact, that there's seemingly no more room for anything else.

Galaxy S8 Iris Scanner Better Than The FBI's Fingerprint Tech?

Of course, that's false. There's plenty of room, indeed, as the front bezels of the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus still carry crucial technology, including an advanced iris scanner that can unlock the phone no-frills; just look at the camera and it's done. Impressively, if reports are to be believed, then this particular security feature might even be better than the FBI's own fingerprint technology.

That's according to Mark Clifton, speaking to Business Insider. Clifton is the chief executive of Princeton Identity, the company behind the iris recognition technology found on said handsets. The claim ties with another claim that the iris scanner is more secure than using fingerprints.

Clifton said the FBI "uses 13 points of identification per fingerprint," so 10 fingers can amount to 130 unique identifiers. On the other hand, the iris scanner on the Galaxy S8 can register up to 200 identifying features only from a single iris. Which is even more impressive if you consider that the scanner scans two irises, meaning the amount of identifying features amount up to 400.

These identifying features include the minute ridges on a person's iris, which the iris scanner picks up via a "near-infrared" filter, rendering the ridges more pronounced so as to accurately register them.

Of course, if it's better than FBI's tried and tested technology will be a point of contention for many, but if the claim is anything close to being accurate, then it's kind of impressive that a technology purportedly better than the FBI's will soon be commercially available. It's worth noting, however, that the FBI probably leverages other kinds of technology in addition to fingerprint authentication, so purely basing which is better based on the number of unique identifiers probably deserves to be questioned.

Galaxy S8's Fingerprint Scanner Placement

As for the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S8, it's unclear how many identifying points it can register, as with any smartphone with a fingerprint sensor, for that matter. But this is good news, simply because many people might not be too keen on using fingerprint sensors.

This might especially be true for the Galaxy S8, which sports a fingerprint sensor on the back panel, perplexingly close to the camera, meaning trying to find the sensor on the back will inevitably lead some people, if not all, to smudge the camera's lens. So in this case, an iris scanner would be more preferable.

Galaxy S8 And S8 Plus

The Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus are Samsung's newest pair of flagships, right after the fiery Note 7. The standard version comes with a 5.8-inch Super AMOLED screen, while the Plus version sports a 6.2-inch screen, both of which have a 2,960 x 1,440 resolution.

Under the hood is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of internal storage, and a 3,000 mAh battery, bumped to 3,500 mAh for the Plus version.

For a detailed spec sheet of both phones, read our previous article covering the unveiling.

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