Hidden code in iOS 7 seemingly confirms iPhone with built-in fingerprint sensor

By , Jul 29, 2013

5s fingerprint

After a three week hiatus, Apple seeded the 4th beta of iOS 7 to developers this morning. The update brings about a number of UI changes and improvements, but no new features have been spotted yet—until now.

Developer Hamza Sood has discovered some hidden code within the beta that seemingly confirms the rumors that the next generation iPhone will feature a built-in fingerprint sensor…

Here’s the screenshot posted:

beta ios 7 fingerprint

And here’s the code:

- 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 

This jibes with previous reports that Apple is building a fingerprint sensor into the Home button of its next iPhone. Such rumors have been bouncing around since Apple acquired sensor-export AuthenTec last year.

But this is the first real evidence we’ve seen that Apple is working on such a feature. There’s been a lot of speculation from pundits and industry analysts, but we have yet to see anything concrete by way of part leaks.

If the fingerprint scanner materializes this year, it’ll be interesting to see how Apple implements it. Will it stop iPhone thefts? Save you from having to remember passwords? Save/load settings for multiple users?

What do you think?

Update: 9to5Mac has added some context to the finding, saying that a source familiar with development of the new iPhone has confirmed that the UI for the fingerprint scanning system is ready. The person says the technology is built around unlocking the phone, but it’s unclear what else it will be able to do at launch time.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001107451445 Yaw Boamah

    Amazing.

  • Boss

    Probably won’t stop people stealing iPhone’s

    • Julio Cesar

      What about self-destruction? haha

    • Maxim∑

      activation lock?

  • Maxim∑

    Thats a major selling point.

    • iosPixel

      Has anyone thought what this could do to the weight of the device? That’s usually a selling point. How do you market the fact your flagship phone just got heavier. Again.

      • Saeed Ghattas

        Let’s just wait and see. You don’t know that, we don’t know that. Don’t get any conclusions fast!

      • Maxim∑

        yeah Im sure the increase of 1 gram is going to be a major trade off

    • http://www.eraser.org B. Braun

      Come on, this is not a finger print scanner, it reads “Photo of a person..” its just what Andoid does, it unlocks the phone with the picture of the owner,,,,
      You’ve been fooled again.

      • Maxim∑

        So I guess the word biometric means picture…

      • highboi

        it can also mean facial recognition

  • ProfessorX1®

    Uhhh NO. i will not give my fingerprints to Apple. F THAT

    • Imahottguy

      It’s highly likely that the fingerprint would be encrypted, and Apple would purposely not have the key, rendering them useless outside of the device.

      That said biometrics have been rumored since the iPhone 3G (iirc). I would question the usefulness of such a thing and the learning curve required for the average user. However I like the idea of new features. Though I would rather have an IR blaster a la S4 to control my TV.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        You sure have a lot of faith in Apple, an NSA Prism member.

    • Major_Domo

      Another NSA tracking tool.

    • Chindavon

      Doesn’t work like that holmes.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Then how does it work fanboy? There’s high probability that It functions the same way iMessage and Siri work; it “encrypts” then stores the data (text/voice/fingerprint) in Apple’s database. However if “Legally” asked to hand over data, they’ll most likely do it without questioning (bit ly/14v1IIj). On top of that, what stops hackers from gaining access to the data?

        Values change, the data doesn’t.

      • Chindavon

        Don’t know. But I’m sure it’s not as simple as, Apple storing everyone’s prints in the cloud and secretly planning a global hostile take-over. My guess is the Government has stipulations and guidelines Apple has to follow in order to make it safe & secure for everyone. You can’t stop hackers, you can only hope to contain them. Yahoos like you think it’s soooo easy to steal anyone’s print on electronic devices, it’s laughable.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Ignoramus Fanboys like you have no logic in your comments, just worshipping the herd master in every way; logical or illogical. It’s funny that you’re actually considered human and not a sheep, despite your characteristics fitting clearly in that category.

      • Chindavon

        No Logic? Right, and you’re the one to talk. “Sheep this, sheep that.” “Fanboy (very original). “herd master (so tired).” So you throw in one smart word and you think you’re smarter than everyone? No, …you’re not.

      • Maxim∑

        We wont know until it comes out, but Apple might store the fingerprint on the device. I see no reason for them to sync it to iCloud.

        From A nexus 4 user…

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Neither do I see any customer-oriented reason for them to store in the cloud, but I clearly see an NSA-Prism-oriented “security” reason for them to do so. I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time trusting NSA Prism members with such data…

      • Maxim∑

        I agree that’s true

  • felixtaf

    Soon we can see d*** and p**** print sensors from competitors (especially Samsung)…

    • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

      Uhm, the Motorola Atrix has had that since it was unveiled. So, Apple is copying Motorola…

      • felixtaf

        Fair enough… I dint mention about copying… I meant flooding the market with the feature… Ex. Touch screen phones, Siri, iCloud etc (those functions were there before, but similar functions flooded the market after Apple’s initiation)

      • mehrab

        Apple – we wont be first but we”ll be the best”

      • mehrab

        Apple wont be the first but they”ll be the best no doubt

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Maybe with version 2/3 of it; they’re new to this stuff (just like maps), so I’m not expecting that until I see it. Either ways, the point is Apple isn’t the first to do anything (they didn’t invent nothing), yet they patent it and sue everyone else that does the same to their device.

      • mehrab

        If apple wasnt here. Music/entertainment/handheld phones and tablets and desktops and laptops would not be the same.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        Oh I 1000% agree with that, but doesn’t give them to right to start acting hypocritical. They’re like almost every other tech company, in terms of invention; they realise great ideas from others, then they advance on it to make better products, they don’t invent anything brand new.

        Only difference is Apple then calls it their invention, patents it and sues competitors who dare to do the same to their product; advance on it….

  • Patrick

    i just hope the 5s will house it

  • Julian Gigola

    Apple is amazing! Improving every second after the other! Thumbs up Apple!

  • sjah07

    Pretty cool, but it had better let you store more than one fingerprint. If you’re working in the shop or doing some rough work with your hands, it’s not uncommon for fingerprints to ‘wear out’ temporarily, so you may need a backup.

  • sivkai

    So are we looking at a capacitive home button or a clickable/touch screen home button similar to the trackpad?

  • seyss

    now that’s a “rumor” I actually believe

  • Dady King

    For normal people its a great feature but people like president or CIA would be thinking to use finger print just for insecurity!!!

  • Misti curia

    It would make more sense for an iPad to have one so to switch profiles or something

  • Abdullah E. D.

    iPhone 5Sensor..?

    • Vijay Panjwani

      Or iPhone 5Scanner?

      • sammy

        iPhone5Security

  • ExRoot

    I’ll believe when I see it.

  • shammaas

    NSA loves this

  • sammy

    iPhone5S (Security!)

  • Yunsar

    How did he get access to the filesystem? I want to know.

  • Fanboyofapple

    I always thought it was “jives with that”, not “jibes”. Like from the movie Airplane! Talking “jive”. Word up.