Samsung put in an order for 3D face recognition components for the Galaxy S9 – bad news for Galaxy owners?

My favourite Samsung leak expert tweeted yesterday regarding an order Samsung have put in with an electronics company. The order was for 3D face recognition components and, apparently, the order was “huge”.

Samsung for Galaxy S9 in the 3D face recognition component under a huge amount of orders.

Samsung for Galaxy S9 in the 3D face recognition component under a huge amount of orders.

This obviously means Samsung are going to try to copy what Apple have done with their FaceID unlocking hardware/software.

This is a bad thing 🙁

kinect sports rivals used the kinect 2.0 sensor on the xbox one
Kinect 2.0 from Microsoft during Kinect Sports Rivals character creation

Don’t get me wrong, the option to have face unlock is, well OK but if they go down the route that Apple mistakenly did and remove the fingerprint scanner too then we’re all doomed*.

Why do I think like this I hear you ask. Well; the story begins a long time ago in a country far away. Well, to be precise it begins about 15 years ago in the county of Worcestershire and with a Logitech Web Cam.

The idea was futuristic, it was ‘out of this world’, it was ‘cool’ and ‘hip’ and all the things people used to say in the 90’s – it was web cam software with facial recognition. Like all good things, the novelty wore off pretty darn quickly.

More recently I have experienced the Microsoft Kinect and Kinect 2.0 – fads which, although I thoroughly enjoyed, were just fads and prone to errors in recognition of not only faces, but body parts (ouch!).

Windows Hello Lumia 950
Windows Hello on the Lumia 950 worked VERY well

Even more recently is the Microsoft Lumia 950 which I owned for about 6 months and featured “Windows Hello”. Now this truly was proper infra-red face recognition and I would definitely say it worked more than it didn’t.

Do you see the theme here – facial recognition, right now, just is not good enough for what we need it to do.

I was at an ice hockey game on Saturday night (I’m not American and this was the first time I’ve ever attended one) and I saw the girl in front of me had an iPhone X.

“Wow” I thought. “That girl’s got way too much money”. I also noticed that one of the times she got her phone out, the face recognition didn’t work.

It may have been 1 in 5 times she looked that it didn’t work. But that 1 in 5 is too much for our tiny brains to accept and we will revert back to easier ways to unlock which we know will gain us entry to our phones.

When her iPhone X failed to unlock I saw her have to type a PIN in. “Excuse me?” I said, “Do you wish that your phone still had a fingerprint reader?”. Well, I didn’t say that because I’m a geek who doesn’t just speak to random strangers – but it’s what I asked in my head. I think the answer would have been “Yes”.

“Windows Hello” on the Lumia 950.  The best example I’ve personally used with true face recognition with the IR scanner. Face (or iris) recognition in this case, on my Galaxy S8 – I haven’t even set it up because I know that it won’t work 100% of the time – heck probably not even 90% of the time.

The Samsung Galaxy S9 Red Edition
Could this be the Galaxy S9?

The fingerprint scanner is in the worst place possible on the Galaxy S8 and I often find my fingerprint doesn’t get read properly. This is a real annoyance and is why I found it quite refreshing to use the Lenovo P2 with it’s front-facing fingerprint scanner which is VERY accurate and quite indeed.

What I’m boiling down to here is this:

Samsung, please keep on giving us options – it’s what you’ve always done in the past. More is better than fewer – that’s why we’re Android users after all. If we wanted a basic and simple user experience we’d have an iOS device. Don’t take away our fingerprint readers, DO put them in a better place and, if you really have to copy Apple and put in face recognition then don’t start increasing your bezels again (i.e. the iPhone X’s ugly notch)! Thanksloveyoubye xxx <3

What are you feelings on phone unlocking techniques? Do you have a favourite? Am I going a bit crazy over this? Let me know down below.


*not really