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Dirty Fingers? No Problem: Pixel 9 Could Switch to an Ultrasonic Scanner

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Google's upcoming Pixel 9 and Pixel 9 Pro, which have been teased to arrive in August, could finally end the fingerprint woes of their predecessors. A new report suggests the company could switch to a more advanced ultrasonic fingerprint scanner.

Google first adopted the under-display optical fingerprint scanner in the Pixel 6 which has since been utilized until the Pixel 8 (review) and Pixel 8 Pro (review). While it introduced enhancements to the previous embedded physical scanner, it does have many disadvantages compared to the newer ultrasonic scanner already found in many premium and flagship smartphones.

For instance, since optical scanners use light when scanning biometrics, their accuracy is more prone to malfunction whenever moist and dirt are present on the display. They could also be annoying when used in low-light scenarios due to the amount of glaring light. In addition, optical scanners are slower and less secure in general than ultrasonic scanners.

Pixel 9 has the same fingerprint scanner module as the Galaxy S24

Citing an unnamed source, outlet Android Authority mentioned Google has opted to use Qualcomm's 3D Sonic Gen 2 ultrasonic scanner in the Pixel 9 range. Notably, this is the same component used in the Galaxy S24 Ultra (review), so it means Google is settling for the newest version.

It detailed that only the Pixel 9, Pixel 9 Pro, and Pixel 9 Pro XL will receive the new scanner and not the Pixel 9 Fold (aka Pixel Fold 2). This is not a surprise since the foldable uses a different display.

Google Pixel 9, Pixel 9 Pro, and Pixel 9 Pro XL
Google's Pixel 9, Pixel 9 Pro, and Pixel 9 Pro XL sizes. / © Rozetked

Beyond the fingerprint scanner, the Pixel 9 was depicted in renders to introduce a revamped design from the Pixel 8, which will favor a flatter look with an iterated camera island on the back. The series should be fitted with a new Tensor G4 chipset and run on Android 15.

Google is set to announce the Pixel 9 and Pixel 9 Pro on August 13, which will be a physical event although it is expected to stream the announcement online.

What do you think of this upgrade in the Pixel 9 series? Do you plan to upgrade to the new Pixel smartphone? We want to hear your thoughts.

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Jade Bryan

Jade Bryan
Junior Editor

I still remember how amazed I was when I first got hold of the Nokia 3210 back when I was a kid, and it was during that time I developed my love for technology, particularly for mobile phones. I started sharing my knowledge through writing in different blogs and forums back in Nokia Nseries era. I even make videos before where I put different phones side-by-side. Today, I'm still an avid enthusiast of smartphones, but my interests have evolved into smart devices and electric vehicles.

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