[THE INVESTOR] Samsung Electronics is working on its own fingerprint sensor chips with aims to enter the lucrative market that is currently dominated by US-based Synaptics and Sweden’s Fingerprint Card.
According to local news outlet Etnews on Nov. 9, the Korean tech giant plans to start production from next year and install the first chips for its own budget smartphones and then into its high-end lineup in phases.
The company has been developing the chips since late last year sensing the soaring demand among handset makers. The company that has been using Synaptics chips for its flagship smartphones such as the Galaxy S series is also hoping to diversify the suppliers.
Fingerprint recognition technology in mobile devices consist of sensor chips, modules and software.
While making the chips on its own, Samsung has recently inked a licensing deal with Sweden’s Precise Biometrics, a market leader in fingerprint software, for the algorithm solution. The company is expected to continue partnership with existing camera sensor module suppliers.
As Samsung and other smartphone makers are embracing a bezel-less, under-glass design for their next mobile devices, reading a fingerprint image through glass is getting more and more important.
With the new chip production, its logic chip and contract making division System LSI is also expected to take on rivals by diversifying its clients other than Samsung.
Etnews added that Samsung has registered related patents in the US since Apple acquired fingerprint sensor technology developer AuthenTec in 2012 in preparation for possible legal disputes.
By Lee Ji-yoon (email@example.com)