iPhone Handsets

Synaptics announce new fingerprint scanner

Synaptics has announced a new fingerprint scanning technology (FS9100) which enables fingerprints to be scanned through a display screen.

The new FS9100 Sensor is capable of reading a fingerprint through a 1mm thick glass display. This would mean that hardware designers no longer needed to allocate a separate area, upon which fingers needed to be placed in order to be scanned. In a quote from synaptics it seems they think this one less reason for a dedicated home button on the next generation iPhone.

Synaptics’ FS9100 family of fingerprint sensors represent a new breed of optical fingerprint sensor technology that is designed to meet the needs of mobile devices, including the ability to image through thick 2.5D glass. In addition to opening the door to new industrial design options, it enables OEMs to provide highly durable, button-free cover glass and more easily provide water resistant products while eliminating low yield glass processing.

No doubt apple already has its own designs and patents on the subject, however this third party announcement does raise a question around the next iPhone not having a home button. I personally wouldn’t like this change as when things don’t go to plan and your phone locks up, its always nice to have an actual button you can press, even with it does nothing!

If the rumors are true then hidden behind the sleek glass display of the iPhone 8 will be a Touch ID fingerprint sensor, camera, light sensor, and the phones earpiece and microphone’s, entirely eliminating the existing lower home button strip and top speaker strip allowing for an iPhone that looks like a single piece of glass.

Other rumors at the moment suggest that the iPhone 8 might be made entirely of glass, however this is a bit of a long shot! My personal favourites are a low power high resolution OLED display the obvious upgrade to the faster A11 processor and most likely would be the current android only feature of wireless charging.

Will NFC make an appearance in the iPhone 6?

NFC-iPhone-6NFC (Near Field Communication) is reportedly going to make its way into the latest device from Apple, the iPhone 6. This has been on the cards since the iPhone 5 redesign however has not yet made it into production.

Integrating NFC (Near Field Communication) into an iPhone would be somewhat of a u-turn for apple as back in 2012 Phil Schiller said that the technology was not the solution to any current problem and so this meant it would not be something apple was perusing.

Apple is likely to incorporate a Near Field Communication (NFC) payment function in the next generation iPhone and has reached an agreement with China UnionPay on a mobile payment service, according to a source close to the matter.
In addition to NFC payment, the two companies will also work together on another mobile payment solution that can be used for purchases in Apple Stores.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted last month that Apple would integrate NFC chips into the next-generation iPhone alongside a host of other features.

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The news also comes as Apple is apparently pursuing plans to develop a mobile payment solution, which will be linked to the Touch ID fingerprint sensor currently found in the iPhone 5s and reportedly headed for the iPhone 6 and next-generation iPads. It is also possible that Apple combines its existing Touch ID fingerprint scanner and NFC technology into the home button, as the company for a patent detailing such a system last September.

Apple is expected to announce the iPhone 6 later on this year, possible around August or September if they follow previous trends.

Apple to start its own Health & Fitness Platform

iwatch-concept-nikeApple is allegedly looking at doing more with the iWatch wearable device than first thought by creating a new health and fitness ecosystem modelled on its successful iOS App Store. Similar to the iOS App Store, this new platform may allow companies to develop their own mobile medical applications that could tie into Apple’s iWatch wearable device.

One mobile health executive, who asked not to be named, told Reuters he recently sat down with an Apple executive from the iWatch team. He said the company has aspirations beyond wearable devices, and is considering a full health and fitness services platform modelled on its apps store.

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Said to be launching as part of iOS 8 later this year, a new Healthbook app is expected to serve as a data-store for health-related information acquired from a variety of sensors on the watch such as resting heart rates, oxygen levels, distance & pace from GPS tracks of runs or activities and much more. Based on the vast amount of data the app appears to be able to track, it is unsurprising that Apple will be looking to open up the ecosystem to third parties to help users fill out all of the various content areas.

One company that could definitely benefit from an Apple health and fitness ecosystem is Nike, which has scaled back its own hardware development of the Fuelband to focus on expanding its software-based NikeFuel platform. Though Nike CEO Mark Parker would not directly comment on any specific plans with Apple, Parker did say in a recent interview that Apple is a long time partner and that he is “excited about where that relationship will go forward.”

Leaked images of the iPhone 6?

New images have come to light today apparently depicting the latest in the series of iPhone’s, the iPhone 6.

iPhone 6 screen

It is currently unclear whether the device in the images is an iPhone 6 prototype or whether it is a fake. Prototypes of the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5c had a blank back plate while the iPhone 6 in the picture clearly shows FCC text that is generally added to the phone at a later date. There is no plastic or glass cut-outs for an antenna, which the current-generation iPod Touch, sporting a similar aluminum-bodied design has next to its rear-facing camera.

The report does fit in with other rumours that the iPhone 6 may be thinner and lighter than the existing iPhone 5s, thanks to advancements in LED back lighting technology. The device in the images is indeed thinner, taking on a curved-edge design much like the existing iPod touch, the iPad mini, and the iPad Air.

The iPhone 6 is also said include a sapphire glass home button or display, which is both thin and durable. It is also believed that the iPhone 6 will be equipped with the same Touch ID fingerprint authentication system first introduced with the iPhone 5s.


iPhone 6 back iPhone 6

Biometric iPhone 5s may not live up to expectations

An analyst has recently said that the Biometric features of the iPhone 5s may not live up to our expectations and probably wont be able to authenticate contact less card payments due to the company only working with apple for around a year.

We expect the iPhone 5S to include a fingerprint sensor with a basic unlocking feature, but do not believe the sensor will be built into iOS 7 enough to introduce a feature like secure payments as we believe that Authentec has only been a part of Apple for less than one year. We believe that payments could be a key feature of the next version of iOS in 2014.

The device is likely to offer third party apps integration with the Biometric scanner however the way in which this will be rolled our across the industry is still to be seen. The feature could, as stated simply be a new way to unlock your device, replacing the need to enter your PIN code.

iPhone 5s to be announced on the 10th September

Our sources have told us that the iPhone 5s will be launched at a media event on the 10th September this year. It is still unclear if the iPhone 5c will be launched alongside the new iPhone 5s, or if it will feature in its own launch show on a later date.

We have seen lots of images and renderings of the new low-cost iPhone which has been called the iPhone 5c among news outlets and fans, apparently with the C standing for “Low-Cost” however this seems like a strange marketing strategy for apple, seeing as its main core feature is that of quality, cheap isn’t something i could see apple wanting associated with their products but only time will tell.

iPhone 5c

The most recent rumors suggest that the new iPhone 5s will be priced at around $490 which is £316.95, a similar price to what the iPhone 4 is currently retailing at when brought on contract with a network.

It is likely that the iPhone 5c will be released on the same date as the iPhone 5s, alongside iOS7 and possibly OSX Mavericks however traditionally this is less likely. the iPhone 5s is rumored to have NFC contact-less payment solutions, a bio-metric fingerprint scanner under the home button and a dual LED flash.

iOS7 confirms rumors of the Biometric Home Button

With the latest IOS 7 release, Beta 4 apple have slipped up and released details of what appears to be a fingerprint scanner hidden under the home button.

After apple’s acquisition of bio-metric security firm AuthenTec last year rumors have been flying around about Bio-metric Fingerprint scanning however apple themselves have remained quiet, until now. The most recent pre-release developers version of iOS7, BETA 4 contains details on an accessibility module referring to bio-metrics and in particular a thumb being pressed to the home button.


The particular piece of code we are referring to is part of the bundle “BiometricKitUI” which appears to be the text for some kind of tutorial for using the fingerprint scanner on the device. The strings which are of particular interest are quoted below.

– Photo of a person holding an iPhone with their left hand while touching the Home button with their thumb
– Photo of a person holding an iPhone with their right hand while touching the Home button with their thumb
– A fingerprint that changes colour during the setup process.
– Recognition is %@ complete


We have read a number of reports from other news websites that apparently production of fingerprint scanners is proving difficult for apple and so initial stock of the device may be limited by a bottleneck in production however apple has always had a long waiting list of people waiting for their new phones and so this should come as no surprise to die hard apple fans!

iPhone 5c case spotted on Amazon

So the rumors about the new iPhone “5c” have been increasing as we expected in the lead up to its suspected launch alongside the iPhone 5s, the latest of which has surfaced in the form of a case being sold on Amazon.com. The case is from an entrepreneurial case designer and manufacturer called Elago and is set to sell for around $25 which is £15 GBP.




The case is currently available in three colours: Black, Navy and White and it does appear to be in line with all the other current leaks about the device, mainly its curved plastic read and the rest is consistent with the iPhone 5’s main design features.

Yesterday the rumors started emerging from a major Chinese manufacturer (Pegatron) who is known to work closely with Apple when a routine inspection by the China Labor Watch who where there to verify claims of poor working conditions for Pegatron’s employees. One employee who’s job it was to apply a protective plastic film to the read of the device to stop it getting damaged or scratched on the production line said

Today’s work is to paste protective film on the iPhone’s plastic back cover to prevent it from being scratched on assembly lines. This iPhone model with a plastic cover will soon be released on the market by Apple. The task is pretty easy, and I was able to work independently after a five-minute instruction from a veteran employee. It took around a minute to paste protective film on one rear cover. The new cell phone has not yet been put into mass production, so quantity is not as important. This makes our job more slow paced than in departments that have begun mass production schedules.


According to all recent reports it looks like the iPhone 5s is on schedule for a late September delivery date alongside the iPhone 5s however currently there is very little known about the upgraded iPhone 5.

Plastic packaging for the iPhone 5c

An image has surfaced on a Chinese blog called WeiPhone which appears to show an all plastic outer shell for the new iPhone packaging, featuring the text iPhone 5c.



The “c” on this device is presumable referring to either the fact that the device is rumored to be available in a number of colours (iPhone 5 colour) or simply the fact it is a low cost model.

The packaging itself is a small white plastic container similar in size and shape to traditional cardboard iPhone packaging however with a rounded base. The front cover of the packaging is not visible in the image however could possibly be a see through plastic lid like you get on some iPod devices to show off the different coloured devices inside.

The website this has been leaked on has provided some reliable information before on previous product launches however as always, we really cant be 100% sure on what we will be getting until apple actually announce the launch of the new device.

Let us know your take on this new case in the comments below.

Image of the new Low Cost iPhone

Today another image has surfaced of the new Low-Cost iPhone which is rumored to be coming to our shelves alongside the iPhone 5s. The image was discovered on a Chinese blog and does appear to be genuine as it looks similar to all the other images we have seen around and also displays all the appropriate certification logos such as the FCC and other legal organisations on the rear.



From this image we can see that the exterior of the phone is at least similar to what we where expecting, a rear camera with a single flash as opposed to the dual flash rumored to feature on the iPhone 5s. The lightning connector and headphone socket are also located on the bottom of the device as they are currently on the iPhone 5.

Current expectations put the iPhone 5s andits low cost little brother to launch around mid-september however this has yet to be announced from apple so may be subject to their usual last minute shifting around.

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