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Apple Killed The Fingerprint Scanner On The Nexus 6

Michael Moore joined TechWeek Europe in January 2014 as a trainee before graduating to Reporter later that year. He covers a wide range of topics, including but not limited to mobile devices, wearable tech, the Internet of Things, and financial technology.

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Ex-Motorola boss reveals how Apple stole the technology away to use in the iPhone

Google’s Nexus 6 smartphone would have featured a fingerprint scanner, were it not for Apple hamstringing the technology, a former Google head has revealed.

Dennis Woodside, the former head of Motorola Mobility, the smartphone arm formerly owned by Google, revealed that Apple’s purchase of the ‘world’s number one fingerprint scanning technology’ left much of the smartphone industry high and dry regarding the technology.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Woodside said that a small ‘dimple’ on the rear of the Nexus 6, designed to help users grip the device more securely and featuring the Motorola logo, was originally meant to have an extra, more sophisticated purpose.

touchidThwarted

However this was meant to be the location of the fingerprint recognition scanner, however, “Apple bought the best supplier. So the second best supplier was the only one available to everyone else in the industry and they weren’t there yet,” Woodside said.

However, he added that having fingerprint recognition, which is currently present in the iPhone 6 (pictured left)  and Samsung Galaxy S5, “wouldn’t have made that big a difference” to the Nexus 6

The introduction of a fingerprint scanner into the Nexus 6 would likely have expanded the potential for consumers to begin using more and more biometric technology.

This appears to be a growing trend, as a Visa Europe study last week revealed that
younger British consumers would have no problem with using biometric data to verify their accounts instead.

Fingerprint scanning was seen as the most popular form of biometric scanning, with nearly 70 percent of respondents saying they would prefer using these to passwords, followed by retina scans (39 percent) and facial recognition (27 percent).

Overall, three-quarters (76 percent) of this younger consumers said that they would feel comfortable making a payment using biometric security, with over two thirds (69 percent) believe this will make their lives faster and easier.

However doubts do remain concerning the security of such systems, with a report from security firm Lookout last year discovering that the TouchID scanner on the iPhone 6 could be hacked with a fake fingerprint.

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