It’s a well-known fact that a vast majority of patents are worthless. It’s extremely difficult to tell if a patent will become a reality. Especially in the case of Apple, which annually submits a large number of patent applications, but many of them don’t see the light of day. Earlier this year, a patent was discovered that described an Apple watch with a flat digital crown capable of recognizing gestures.
And now, according to the reports from iUpdate and The Verifier, Apple is working on two different approaches to integrate Touch ID, a fingerprint sensor, into the upcoming Apple Watch. The first approach would be to integrate a fingertip sensor into the Digital Crown (where the electrode for ECG functions is also located). The other (much more interesting) one would aim to add the sensor under the display of the watch itself.
As always, the Apple watch still relies on a PIN code to authenticate the user. The user must type in a PIN code the first time they put the watch on their wrist. The watch will not then necessarily ask for the PIN again as long as the user keeps wearing the watch.
The innovations provided, of course, do not stop there. Apple may add some smaller features like increased water protection and battery life, enhanced connectivity with Wi-Fi 6, and support a wider LTE spectrum. The sources of The Verifier also learned that Apple is working on a new sleep tracking function and a feature that will measure the amount of oxygen in the blood.
Needless to say that this should be taken with a grain of salt since, for the moment, there is no certain information even on the Apple Watch Series 6. But, if the rumors on Apple Watch were confirmed, then perhaps it would be reasonable to expect a return of the Touch ID on the iPhone too. Recently, the well-known analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also spoke of the Touch ID, predicting the return on a cheap iPhone that Apple should release at the beginning of 2021.