Opinion

Why I don’t use the Galaxy S9’s iris or facial recognition features

Many of you probably know the answer, and some of you are likely to have the same reason as me for not using iris or facial recognition on the Galaxy S9 or S9+. But if you’re wondering why I wouldn’t use such convenient features on a flagship phone, well, it’s simple: I don’t need to because the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S9 is right where it needs to be.

From convenience to necessity

When the Galaxy Note 7 was introduced with an iris sensor on-board, it brought convenience that people didn’t actually need, as the front-facing fingerprint sensor meant you could just press the home button to unlock the device as everyone had been doing for so long. Then the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ came out, and the iris sensor – along with facial recognition – became a necessity. The fingerprint sensor was sent to the back, and while that’s standard fare in the smartphone industry, Samsung chose to put the fingerprint reader next to the camera and not below it as logic would dictate. It was hard to reach for many consumers, yes, but it also wasn’t suitable for those who use a phone with their left hand.

Combined with the pressure-sensitive software home key, which one can press down on to directly go to the home screen, iris and facial scanning on the Galaxy S8 alleviated the messed up ergonomics of the fingerprint reader to some extent. I quickly adjusted to the iris scanner on the S8+ and skipped using the fingerprint sensor, and I’m sure I’m far from the only person who did the same when they purchased the Galaxy S8 or S8+ (particularly the latter, which is considerably taller than the regular S8).

Then came the Galaxy S9, and Samsung finally fixed one of the biggest shortcomings of its 2017 flagship devices. It isn’t a solution everyone liked. Since the fingerprint sensor is still quite close to the camera, many users complained that they were now smudging the camera lens through the act of swiping down on the fingerprint sensor to access the notification shade. Indeed, the ability to do that is a very handy feature, and those who had gotten used to the skewed placement of the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S8 weren’t very happy with the change in the fingerprint sensor’s position on the Galaxy S9.

The fingerprint sensor makes ‘sense’ again

But for those of us who couldn’t be bothered to put in the time to adjust to the Galaxy S8’s fingerprint sensor, the Galaxy S9 was a godsend. Or, well, what the Galaxy S8 should have been from the start. Apart from the first couple of weeks where I was using the Intelligent Scan feature (which uses iris and facial recognition in tandem) on my Galaxy S9+, I have stuck to using just the fingerprint sensor for unlocking the phone and accessing features like Samsung Pay. It’s been much easier to learn not to touch the camera by mistake when tapping or swiping the fingerprint sensor on the S9, compared to learning to adjust to the awkwardly placed sensor on the S8.

Samsung’s habit of putting the rear camera at the center instead of the corner like the competition means even the center alignment of the fingerprint reader isn’t ideal. A rear-mounted fingerprint sensor also means you have to pick up the phone off a table in order to use it. Then again, that limitation also applies to iris or facial scanning unless you keep your phone propped up a dock, or Samsung’s wireless charger, in front of you, at a distance that’s close enough for either of those functions to work.

Until Samsung can bring us a phone with the fingerprint reader under the display or make iris or facial scanning work as quick as fingerprint recognition, the Galaxy S9’s fingerprint sensor continues to be the most logical, at least to me. If the rumors are true, Samsung will have an in-display fingerprint sensor ready for the Galaxy S10, and I am just going to ignore iris and facial recognition like the many other features I never use.

What about you? Are you using iris or facial recognition on your Galaxy S9 or S9+, or have you just set up the fingerprint sensor like me? Sound off in the comments!

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A2theC
A2theC

I use both finger print on each hand as I’m ambidextrous and the iris scanner which is preferred. Side note, left hand is easier for me to reach the finger scanner. I find it easier to use the finger in daylight when the iris scanner is trouble detecting my eyes as I’m squinting or wearing sunglasses. My Note 7 has excellent it’s detection even through the same pair of sunglasses, strange how the upgraded model doesn’t work as well.

Lucidfer
Lucidfer

I don’t use Iris scanner, because I’m not a stupid f***. It’s enough to give out my fingerprint already, I’m not going to give my Iris or Face biometric to companies and agencies to track what is my personal private affairs.

selex77
selex77

tanto ne sono gia’ in possesso, basta essersi fatti un selfie, rimane in memoria e se volgiono recuperano i dati quando vogliono.

Jumhaeg
Jumhaeg

Personally, I use either Fingerprint or Iris Scanner with my Note 8 as sometimes it’s easier to unlock with a fingerprint scan or with my irises. It really depends on the situation and how I’m holding my device, as both methods are fast.

n900mixalot
n900mixalot

Iris scanner hurts my eyes.

qwerty67890@yahoo.com

why does it hurts?

selex77
selex77

????????????lo scanner dell’iride utilizza la fotocamera anteriore e nulla piu’, che male ti fa?????

s7edgefan
s7edgefan

front finger print is a must for me.. ill keep my old s7 until samsung implements the in glass fingerprint technology in an upcoming s / note series flagship 😉

DoctorKDS
DoctorKDS

Have used fingerprint & iris scan on my Note 8 since I bought it. Both work well for me as a righthanded person. Probably will think about adding S3 soon.

ijazali
ijazali

I dont use mine on note 8 because fingerprint is easy.
And also (i think) iris or face scanner using will consume battery.
Dont know if its true.

keynerajs93
keynerajs93

It’s true, I disable all except the pin because of the battery

selex77
selex77

l’influenaza sulla batteria non e’ quantificabile dato la poca energia usata.

simchester
simchester

What’s next DNA test to get your phone unlocked…lol

I use both…. would welcome DNA test coz it’ll be 100% fool proof…lol

nefi45
nefi45

I use Intelligent Scan, Iris only, and fingerprint at convenience. I have no complaints despite fingerprint reader location.

C F
C F

Never bothered with them or pin. Untill its integrated into the 3rd party lock screens I find its an extra step I dont want besides ive blocked calls messaging since ive went voip on a tablet data plan

lfcrodrigues
lfcrodrigues

Im on S8+ and I use Iris Scan on 80% of the time. It is not perfect But it is Better than fingerprint Reader.

DENNIS7215
DENNIS7215

I can’t use Iris scanner,facial recognition or even selfie camera on my S8+.
They all died after I installed Open camera and activated Camera2 API.
😪😪😪😪.
I’m left-handed and it’s easy to reach the fingerprint scanner

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

Intelligent scan is very fast and very secure – not fooled by a photo and honestly – it simulates an in display fingerprint scanner. You force touch the home button and the phone unlocks. Never had an issue with it not working when I wanted it to… But yes, they’re times it has unlocked when I don’t mean it to. But I can live with that. Yes, it doesn’t work flat on a desk but with notifications and an AOD I already know if I need to pick my phone up to unlock it. Seriously never seen anyone actually USE… Read more »

andyshannon3
andyshannon3

I have both fingerprint and iris enabled but i gotta say, i have some annoyances about the iris scanner i want to bring up. Sometimes i want to just look at my notifications on my lock screen and get a quick glance at what they are, when i bring up my lock screen and start reading my notification, my iris scanner kicks in and unlocks my phone, and thus hiding my notifications again. I am close to considering turning it off and just going with my Gear S3 unlock and fingerprint scanner.

Biransahin
Biransahin

I can imagine! Lol. I do recommend keeping the phone unlocked with your Gear S3. It is so convenient you forget all about the other methods. You can also set up safe locations like your home even if you’re not wearing the watch.

cmdacos
cmdacos

Google is getting rid of trusted location so you will have to rely on trusted devices or trusted networks.

Biransahin
Biransahin

Ah ok, didn’t know that. I use my watch anyway but there’s plenty of options around most houses for trusted devices I imagine. Good to know though! Thanks.

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

You know there’s a setting that can stop it doing that. Just deselect “activate when screen turns on”. Then you swipe or use FPS to unlock.

Biransahin
Biransahin

I never use the fingerprint sensor or the iris scanner or pin or facial recognition! I keep my phone unlocked with my Gear S3 Frontier! And use location unlock at home in case my watch is charging away from the phone..

Jafar Sadeghi
Jafar Sadeghi

After long time waiting for S7 update.
Why i will buy a non-samsung phone?
Because Samsung uodate sucks

chippyuk
chippyuk

I have both enabled! No reason not to IMHO!

I am just waiting for all the moaners to start again when/if they move the sensor back to the front of the phone (under display)! Yup, the same people who moaned when it was moved to the back LOL

Lendo66
Lendo66

I have both,when i have phone on table i use intelligent scan,when in hands i use fingerprint