The upcoming Galaxy S8 will give Samsung a chance to regain the trust of customers following the Galaxy Note 7 debacle. It is rumored to have some major hardware upgrades, including a truly full-screen display that covers the top and bottom edges of the handset. Now a new report coming out of China claims that the Galaxy S8 could ditch the physical home button.

Samsung Galaxy S8
Image Credit: Jami3.org/Flickr

An optical fingerprint sensor is faster than the ultrasonic one

According to a posting on Chinese microblogging site Weibo, the Galaxy S8 will feature an optical fingerprint sensor embedded in the display. It will eliminate the need to build fingerprint sensors in the home button. If it turns out to be true, the Galaxy S8 will be Samsung’s first handset to have an optical fingerprint scanner. It works when you place a finger on the glass display.

An optical fingerprint sensor is said to be faster and more accurate than the ultrasonic fingerprint recognition. Reports suggest that the manufacturing yield of the optical fingerprint sensor for the S8 is not high. The handset is still several months away, so Samsung has plenty of time to address the yield issues.

Galaxy S8 to be unveiled at MWC

Recently, there were rumors that the Galaxy S8 could be delayed by two weeks as Samsung had deployed the S8 development team to figure out the problem that was causing Galaxy Note 7 handsets to explode. More recent reports indicate that Samsung’s next-gen flagship is on track to be unveiled on February 26 in Barcelona and hit the store shelves in March.

Leaked details on Weibo suggest that the Galaxy S8 would sport a 5.5-inch 4K Super AMOLED display, 6GB RAM, and Exynos 8895 processor. The device is said to focus heavily on virtual reality. Another report coming out of China claimed that Samsung would launch the Galaxy S8 in two screen sizes: 5.1-inch and 5.5-inch. Only time will tell if it can help Samsung revive its smartphone business.

Apple, Microsoft may follow suit

Samsung is not the only company considering adding fingerprint scanner in the smartphone displays. Apple has been granted the patent for a similar technology that will allow it to embed the fingerprint sensor in the display. The Cupertino company is rumored to use this technology in the next year’s iPhone 8. Microsoft has also patented technology to have the fingerprint sensor built into the display.

Following the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco, Samsung is planning to diversify its battery supplier base to reduce the risk for the Galaxy S8. According to the Korea Herald, Samsung is in talks with LG Chem for the supply of Galaxy S8 batteries. LG Chem is a leader in battery technology, but the two companies rarely use each other’s components in their products due to the fierce rivalry.