For years, rumors have circulated about companies like Samsung and Apple attempting to integrate fingerprint sensors into their smartphones’ displays — and now someone’s actually gone and done it. Vivo, a major Chinese smartphone brand owned by the same company behind Oppo and OnePlus, has announced the X20 Plus UD, the first ever smartphone to ship with the technology.
The phone is the result of collaboration between Vivo and Synaptics, the US-based sensor maker. We tried out the in-display fingerprint sensor on a pre-production phone at CES 2018 earlier this month, and it ended up winning our Best in Show award. You can see it in action in the video below.
The demand for in-display fingerprint sensors has grown as phone design evolves in the direction of slimmer bezels and screens taking up almost all of the front of the device. Some companies, like Samsung and Google, have gotten around this by placing the fingerprint sensor on the rear of the phone, which can be less convenient; Apple, meanwhile, engineered its Face ID system on the iPhone X so that it could abandon fingerprint authentication altogether.
Vivo’s X20 Plus UD is a pretty straightforward device beyond its fingerprint scanner — in fact, the regular X20 Plus came out last year and had the sensor on the back. It has a 6.43-inch 2160 x 1080 18:9 OLED display with slim bezels on the top and bottom, dual 12-megapixel cameras, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor, and a 3,905mAh battery.
The X20 Plus UD is only being released in China for now, with preorders set to open today. No word on pricing just yet.