While last year’s ill-fated Galaxy Note 7 looked essentially like a larger S7 Edge, with no conspicuous design revisions, big add-ons or tradeoffs, we had every reason to expect the Galaxy Note 8 to change one important visual element of the S8 and S8+.
That’s because, as sleek and eye-catching as the new “Infinity Display” might be, it’s sure disheartening (and awkward) to have to reach at the back of the two latest flagship devices for fingerprint unlocking or mobile payment authorization.
Making matters worse, it’s pretty easy to mistake the biometric reader for a camera that sits right next to it, which is why a recently “leaked” fishy Note 8 dummy unit got us all excited about a possible under-glass fingerprint sensor.
Like the one the Galaxy S8 was clearly supposed to feature back in the day, before component supplier Synaptics ran into functionality trouble. Alas, the same kind of difficulties may now be plaguing Samsung Galaxy Note 8 production, according to Korean media, with one unnamed company official claiming “we made every effort to install a display-integrated fingerprint sensor, but we decided not to install it on this strategic phone due to various technical limitations such as security.”
If that wasn’t bad enough, the same East Asian publication says Apple will most likely succeed in implementing the technology on the iPhone 8 this fall, which isn’t going to reflect well on the chaebol’s reputation or that of high-profile partners like CrucialTec, the world’s largest manufacturer of optical trackpad mobile input devices.
With dual rear-facing cameras almost definitely in tow, the Note 8 is going to have an even trickier mission of mounting a physical fingerprint scanner in a convenient spot, though Samsung could simply take a page from LG’s playbook.