In a new research note, Barron’s claims Apple is down to the wire with “just weeks to fix its fingerprint problem” or be forced to either delay the iPhone 8’s launch or do away with Touch ID altogether. Problems with the speed and accuracy of sensors embedded under the iPhone 8’s OLED screen has led Apple to delay orders on the necessary chips to run a fingerprint sensor, leading analyst Andy Hargreaves to conclude that if Apple doesn’t place the necessary orders by early August, the company will have to delay the device’s launch or drop the fingerprint scanning feature.
There has been serious speculation about Apple doing away with its fingerprint reader, but Hargreaves claims doing do might irritate users since “it would not work without clear line of sight to the user’s face,” forcing the user to spend far more time aligning the phone to recognize a face than it would to use TOuch ID. “Even if this encompassed just 5% of login scenarios, it would mean that several times a day the new iPhone would perform worse at an elemental feature than older iPhones, which would risk pushback from consumers,” Hargreaves said. It’s likely the move would also keep the iPhone 8 from having access to services like Apple Pay, since Hargreavs and his associates “do not believe facial recognition would be initially qualified as an acceptable verification method for Apple Pay.”