The Galaxy S9 may one-up Face ID with this rumored feature

Intelligent scan is a new biometric authentication feature we may see in the Samsung Galaxy S9.

Gordon Gottsegen CNET contributor
Gordon Gottsegen is a tech writer who has experience working at publications like Wired. He loves testing out new gadgets and complaining about them. He is the ghost of all failed Kickstarters.
Gordon Gottsegen
2 min read
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The flood gates are open. After a slew of rumors and renders of the Samsung Galaxy S9 surfaced recently, in anticipation of the phone's announcement on Feb. 25, rumors of some key new features have surfaced.

The info comes from an APK teardown of the latest Android Oreo beta for the Galaxy Note 8, done by SamCentral. Similar to the HomePod leak last year that spilled the beans on many of the iPhone X's secrets, the code in this beta contains references to several features that don't yet exist -- and therefore may be coming to the Galaxy S9. These features include "Intelligent Scan" facial recognition, 3D stickers and a shot-tagging camera mode.

Intelligent Scan may be a new method of biometric authentication that combines iris scanning and facial recognition for extra security. According to the code, it seems like Intelligent Scan can be used to do things like unlock your phone or sign in to websites. It also apparently works well in low-light or bright conditions in which Samsung's normal iris scanning and facial recognition may struggle. There's even a little video that demonstrates this:

It seems like Intelligent Scan is Samsung's direct response to the iPhone X's Face ID. The Galaxy S9 will be Samsung's first flagship phone since Apple released the iPhone X and as a result the two will compete to be in your pocket. 

Since Face ID gained a lot of attention since the iPhone X's release, Samsung may be attempting to show that the Galaxy S9 offers everything the iPhone X does, and possibly more. Samsung's code even mentions that Intelligent Scan works as soon as the phone's screen is turned on without swiping or hitting any buttons -- just like Face ID.

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Samsung's 3D stickers and shot tagging revolve around photography functions. According to the code, the 3D stickers use the phone's dual cameras -- remember, dual cameras are rumored for the Galaxy S9 Plus -- to sense depth and add stickers or images to your photos. This may end up resembling Snapchat's 3D stickers, but built into your Galaxy S9 Plus. Tag shot, on the other hand, seems to embed information such as location and weather conditions into the photo. Interestingly, this also resembles a Snapchat feature.

Watch this: Samsung Galaxy S9: The latest details

If you're interested in learning more about these features, be sure to read the code that SamCentral posted for some possible insights. But whether or not features like this excite you, this may be just a taste of all the features to come during Samsung's Unpacked event on Feb. 25. Stay tuned to CNET as we cover the event.

Samsung declined to comment.

This is what the Galaxy S8 looks like under a macro lens

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