Apple is the reason the Nexus 6 doesn’t have a fingerprint scanner

Since the Nexus 6 was released, it’s been evident that Google’s developer flagship came very close to having a fingerprint scanner. Thanks to ex-Motorola CEO and current Dropbox COO Dennis Woodside, we know why it was eventually axed: The available fingerprint scanners simply weren’t good enough.

In an interview with the Telegraph, Woodside explained that because Apple had purchased the “best supplier” of fingerprint recognition technology, Android makers like Motorola had to deal with “the second best supplier” and that supplier’s technology wasn’t “there yet.” Apple purchased AuthenTec in 2012 for $356 million.

Woodside also agrees with many that the Nexus 6 is a little too big for one-handed use. “It is enormous. It’s a bit big for me; I drop it all the time,” Woodside said.


Motorola Atrix had an installed fingerprint scanner based on AuthenTec technology in 2011.

[company]Motorola[/company] actually produced a phone with an AuthenTec fingerprint reader in 2011, the Atrix 4G, before Apple purchased the biometric security company. Recent reports indicate that Samsung is still unsatisfied with its fingerprint scanning feature and might be using new fingerprint scanner parts that don’t require swiping. Samsung uses CrucialTec fingerprint scanners on devices like the Galaxy S5.

Authentic ends up looking like a great purchase for [company]Apple[/company], which usually seeks to fully control the technologies it uses. It turns out that the purchase of AuthenTec for $356 million didn’t just lead to Touch ID, and therefore eventually Apple Pay. It was also a setback for competitors, who are still catching up to Apple’s fingerprint scanning technology years later.

The Apple Roundup: MLB fans embrace Passbook baseball tickets

Here’s our daily pick of stories about Apple from around the web that you shouldn’t miss. Today’s installment: will mobile tickets replace paper, past complaints about Apple Maps, a gathering in Europe to hash out patent problems doesn’t accomplish much, and teens continue buying iPads.

Pre-merger, Apple, AuthenTec were working on new tech together

SEC filings reveal AuthenTec was shopping around a new product a year ago and Apple was the only interested company that could afford it. After months of collaboration, Apple decided to buy AuthenTec instead. Could we see this new tech in a new product soon?

The Apple Roundup: The iPhone from an alternate universe

Here’s our daily pick of stories about Apple from around the web that you shouldn’t miss: a look at early iPhone and iPad prototypes, an Apple chip designer checks out, details on the AuthenTec deal, what a stock split would mean, and more Apple-Samsung legal squabbling.

AuthenTec: another piece of an Apple mobile payments plan?

Apple’s intent to acquire AuthenTec is another possible clue, in addition to its Passbook software coming this fall, and its experience running one of the most successful e-commerce sites on the planet, as to what Apple might be working on in the area of mobile payments.

Apple scoops up secure fingerprint sensor maker AuthenTec for $356M

Apple has purchased a mobile security firm that counts many of its mobile competitors as partners. Why? Apple may be eyeing fingerprint-based authentication for iPhones, or perhaps it wants AuthenTec’s NFC-payment security technology for a future iPhone with mobile payment capabilities.