Most of whatever Apple does, Samsung quickly copies. Sometimes their implementation of an Apple idea is actually better than the original, but most of the time they stumble. Case in point, today’s announcement of the gold Galaxy S4. Now copying a color is one thing, all you need is some paint, but what about the other key feature of the iPhone 5s, the fingerprint scanner?
According to The Korea Herald, Samsung doesn’t really care. They quote an unnamed Samsung official as saying: “We are not yet developing the technology.” The article goes on to say that there’s a company in Korea who is actively working on fingerprint technology called Crucialtec, and their work has appeared in a Pantech phone, but it’s not as fast, nor as accurate, as the Authentec technology that Apple has in the iPhone. The Crucialtec stuff is at least a year behind, according to local analysts, so you can forget about seeing a fingerprint scanner in the GS5.
When should Samsung start giving a damn about fingerprints? If you look at the iPhone 5s, there are only two use cases for the fingerprint scanner. One, locking your phone. Two, buying apps from the app store. If and when Apple expands those capabilities and developers genuinely find something useful to do, then Samsung will probably pull an Apple and just buy a fingerprint specialist.