Apple Wins a Patent for Touch ID under the Display using a Fairly Large Optical Image Sensor
Apple has been working on Touch ID for under the display for years now and Patently Apple has covered many such patents such as these: 01, 02, 03 & 04. Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially published a newly granted patent for yet another Touch ID patent using a fairly large under display optical sensor. Especially with COVID-19, having Touch ID under the display as a secondary biometric would be welcomed.
Apple's granted patent covers an electronic device such as an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and MacBook that includes an optical image sensor, sensing circuitry and a plurality of metallization layers above the optical image sensing circuitry.
Each layer may have at least one light transmissive collimation opening therein aligned with the optical image sensing circuitry. The electronic device may also include a light source layer adjacent the optical image sensor and a transparent cover layer above the light source layer defining a finger placement surface configured to receive a finger adjacent thereto.
The plurality of light transmissive collimation openings may have a cylindrical shape. The plurality of light transmissive collimation openings may have a frusto-conical shape, for example.
The optical image sensor may further include a passivation layer above the plurality of metallization layers. The optical image sensor may further include a plurality of inter-level dielectric layers respectively carrying each of the plurality of metallization layers, for example.
The optical image sensing circuitry may include an array of photodiodes and readout circuitry coupled thereto, for example. The light source layer may include a plurality of spaced apart light emitting diodes. The light source layer may include a display layer including a plurality of spaced apart display pixels.
The electronic device may also include an optically transparent adhesive layer between the light source layer and the optical image sensor. An optically transparent adhesive layer may be between the transparent cover layer and the light source layer, for example.
Apple's patent FIG. 3 above is a schematic cross-sectional view of a portion of an iPhone with Touch ID.
Apple's granted patent 10,768,751was originally filed in Q2 2018 and published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office.