Samsung is throwing down the gauntlet with its next flagship smartphone.
In a report from Korean publication The Bell, leaked details of the phone show that the Android phone manufacturer wants to adopt key features from Apple in its upcoming flagship.
Samsung is reportedly running around the clock to perfect 3D face-scanning technology — set to replace the existing iris scanner technology — in time for the Samsung Galaxy S10 launch expected next year. If certain production benchmarks are not met, however, the new phone is expected to continue using an iris scanner, as older model phones have.
According to The Bell, Samsung is developing the face-scanning technology with Israeli 3D tech company Mantis Vision, and the feature will directly compete with Apple’s Face ID launched last year (which has faced some criticism).
Face-recognition technology has sparked privacy and security concerns around the globe, due to its collection of personal biometrics that third-party apps can access. For example, Facebook is currently undergoing a class-action privacy lawsuit over its face-recognition technology, but Samsung is nonetheless diving into this area head first.
Iris scanning is naturally being phased out with the advent of 3D face detection, mainly because it is easily bypassed and would be the third biometric-based security function on the phone if it were kept. There’s also a Fingerprint on Display feature in the works, according the report, which would result in an overabundance of body part-based authentication methods.
Although this all sounds exciting, this leak remains at least two major phone announcements away. The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has yet to be announced, and experts predict it will launch globally in early August — but additional details were not disclosed in The Bell’s report.
As for what we know: The Samsung Galaxy S10 is expected to have a screen size of 5.8 inches, while the Galaxy S10+ will most likely come in at 6.3 inches. There will also reportedly be options of one camera, two cameras, and three cameras with two rear-facing cameras (akin to Huawei’s P20 Pro).
One of the Galaxy S10 models will also remove the revolutionary curved-edge screen introduced three years ago, while two will keep their curves. It may be more than a full year away — but we’re excited to see just how Samsung fights to keep its relevance in an increasingly competitive smartphone industry.