Android M to bring native support for fingerprint scanning

Google's upcoming Android M will bring support for fingerprint authentication.

By Silky Malhotra Published Date
22 - May - 2015
| Last Updated
12 - Jun - 2015
Android M to bring native support for fingerprint scanning

Google 'Android M' will have native fingerprint authentication support according to a new report. Google is expected to unveil the OS at the upcoming Google I/O 2015 conference.

Details about the upcoming OS were accidentally revealed by the internet giant. Now a new report states that one of the most important features about the OS will be native fingerprint authentication support. The feature will become a part of the complete Android OS ecosystem; however OEMs will need to include the fingerprint sensor hardware on their devices for it to work. The Apple iPhone 6, Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge and HTC One M9 already come with a fingerprint authentication system.

Fingerprint authentication in Android M will help app developers to take advantage of the security feature while building apps. Reportedly Google could use the technology to help users sign in to websites, make Google Play purchases and Google Wallet authentication without entering their passwords. The likelihood of the fingerprint authentication coming to Android M is extremely high, as Google had tried to introduce the feature in Android Lollipop and Nexus 6. The next Nexus device made by Huawei or LG is expected to have the feature.

However Dennis Woodside, former Motorola CEO has explained that since Apple bought Authentec, perhaps the best maker of fingerprint sensor chips, other OEMs were left with the second best option. "The secret behind that is that it was supposed to be fingerprint recognition, and 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," he said.

Google is expected to launch Android Pay at I/O conference this year, an API that's “built from the ground up” for Android developers. Reportedly, Google Wallet will still remain alive, so it's unclear if Android Pay is the new consumer-facing brand or just the name of an API. It is also a possibility Google may keep both the services. Sundar Pichai, the SVP of products at Google stated at the Mobile World Congress earlier this year that Android Pay would start with NFC and eventually work with "biometrics," which could mean a fingerprint scanner.

Source: Arstechnica