Was iOS 7 too early? Some blame it on the recent failures the iPhone 5s biometric sensor is experiencing. The first days it worked perfectly, but a matter of days ago many users – especially through the Apple community forums – are reporting fingerprint authentication problems. What is really the reason why it is not working properly?
Some users of the new iPhone 5s are reporting some problems with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor. As we can read in Forbes, the same author of the article explains his latest bad experiences with the sensor. At first everything worked fine, as expected. But since a few days the sensor doesn’t recognize any finger anymore except the left thumb – little used to unlock the terminal -, after updating and restoring the settings. The Apple forums reproduce the problem and a possible solution that seems to work for many after a visit to the Genius Bar:
You can see that this is now the fashion: who hits the pattern has a prize? . Others talk about clean and dry hands, but a uniform pattern is not repeated either. For some it works, for others it doesn’t.
Here’s what another user is praying for on the Apple forums. Maybe the sensor wasn’t ready for this iPhone batch yet? Apple had to come up with something new, and presumably the new iPad and iPad mini, surely with a new iPod touch, will come equipped with the new biometric sensor in addition to the 64-bit A7 processor.
Another reason that is exposed in Forbes is that Apple wants to get ahead of the FIDO Alliance. What this alliance of companies, among which are MasterCard, Google, Lenovo or PayPal among others, seeks is to standardize some biometric authentication systems alternative to the usual keys today. What Apple achieves with the Touch ID is to place at least the hardware needed in the hands of thousands of people before another system is established on the market.
Apple’s hardware need not be bad, but rather what we seem to have now is a problem with software that can be fixed later with an upgrade. The iPhone 4 antennagate was the closest thing to a hardware issue that Apple has ever had. The Maps and iOS 7 may have been released prematurely. Nothing that can’t be fixed. The race for biometrics and secure personal authentication has begun.
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