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Uh-oh, looks like the iPhone 8 won’t have a fingerprint sensor under the screen

By on August 7, 2017

The gift of HomePod firmware just keeps on giving.

Yesterday, developer Steve Troughton-Smith poked a bit through the firmware for Apple’s yet-to-be-released smart speaker HomePod and found that the upcoming iPhone 8 will indeed be all screen on front and have 3D face scanning capabilities.

Today, he poked through the code some more, and the news is not very good.

It appears that the HomePod firmware has no reference to any sort of ultrasound, under-the-screen Touch ID fingerprint sensor.

While this isn’t proof that the feature won’t be available, it does make it a lot less likely, especially since Troughton-Smith did find references to the virtual home button on the phone’s screen.

This is in line with recent reports that said the iPhone 8 will have 3D scanning instead of — not alongside — the fingerprint scanner. It sounded (still does) like a bad idea; let’s hope the 3D face scanning is so good that the fingerprint scanner isn’t needed.

Troughton-Smith also said the new iPhone might support “tap to wake” functionality, seen on Windows Phones and some Androids, like the LG G6.

Finally, it looks as if the new iPhone status bar might have a ton of new functionality, though details on that are scarce.

As always, the fact that something is present or absent in the HomePod firmware — which Troughton-Smith claims is pretty much the same as the iPhone firmware — doesn’t necessarily translate into actual iPhone features. But it’s nice to have some official Apple code reinforcing some of the rumors we’ve heard from Apple’s supply chain over the last year.