The upcoming iPhone 6 may include an improved Touch ID fingerprint scanner, according to a new Apple patent.
A bunch of patents picked up by Patently Apple suggests that Apple may be developing the technology to further enhance its famous security feature. Apple is rumoured to include far-field sensors in the fingerprint scanner. This will improve the quality of the user-captured fingerprint, at least in theory. The sensors, which could be located inside the touch screen or into a control device, could also determine the orientation of the user's finger during scan. The improved TouchID fingerprint sensor could be adopted by other Apple devices like Mac computers and iPod Touch, according to the information on the patent.
Another patent suggested that the fingerprint sensor will be combined with Global Positioning System (GPS). This could be beneficial to parents tracking their children or relatives. Patently Apple also commended the rumoured upgrade on the feature and suggested that these features can be innovated so that elderly people can make 911 calls using their fingerprints if they need help.
Apple's patent also explained that this feature can track people on house arrest. But Michelle Jones of ValueWalk thinks it will also give NSA more technology to track people's move.
Another significant improvement that can be developed for the fingerprint sensor is its ability to record and identify unauthorised users through their fingerprints. This is beneficial to users whose phones are stolen, as they will be able to identify the culprit based on such information.
Apple still has not confirmed which particular enhancements on the fingerprint sensor, if any, will arrive in the upcoming handset or the iPhone 6 features, in general. There are rumours that suggest that Apple may add an eye scanner to further improve the smartphone's security, but these have not been confirmed yet.
Other iPhone 6 rumoured features include a larger screen display, A8 processor and iOS 8. Other Apple patents also suggest some possible iPhone 6 specs such as a curved or flexible screen embedded by durable material called liquidmetal, a refocusable light camera, an improved Siri as well as gesture control.