Motorola wanted to implement a fingerprint sensor on the Nexus 6, but couldn’t because of Apple

By January 28th, 2015 AT 5:36 PM

Have you ever wondered that it would be awesome if the dimple on the back of the Moto X or the Nexus 6 could double up as a fingerprint sensor? Well, there’s a reason why Motorola Nexus 6 doesn’t have a fingerprint sensor, it is because of Apple.

Motorola Nexus 6

Turns out that Motorola had to remove the fingerprint recognition sensor at the last minute, which was to be placed on the back of Motorola’s Nexus 6. Motorola couldn’t go ahead with the plan because the supplier, which was supposed to provide fingerprint sensors to Motorola, was acquired by Apple. In 2012, Apple bought AuthenTec for $356 million, which allowed users to just place their finger over the sensor. Then, Apple implemented the technology into the iPhone 5S, the iPhone 6, and the iPhone 6 Plus.

Motorola could have gone ahead with the fingerprint sensor by going with the second best supplier but it decided not to as “they weren’t there yet“, according to Dennis Woodside, former Motorola CEO. What remains after removing the fingerprint sensor is the dimple at the back end of the Nexus 6, where Motorola inserted its logo instead.

The Nexus 6 would not have been the first Android device to implement fingerprint sensor, but if it had gone ahead with its implementation, it would definitely have been praised for its implementation. Other Android manufacturers like HTC and Samsung who have tried to experiment with finger print sensor have been fairly criticised for clumsy implementation of the fingerprint sensor.

Last month, ArsTechnica had reported that Shamu originally contained source code for some security feature adding an interesting layer to Android. It was rumoured that it could include a fingerprint sensor. With Woodside’s disclosure, it’s pretty clear where Motorola and Google wanted to head.

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Apurva is a tech enthusiast who loves her gadgets and talks about digital media usage. She is currently developing and works for an IT company.

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