Touch ID sensors could be coming to iPads in the near future

When Apple debuted the iPhone 5s, it came with a fingerprint sensor called Touch ID. This allowed users to use their fingerprints to unlock their phone and to make purchases on iTunes without having to enter their password. There were rumors that this feature was going to make its way onto the iPad Air and the iPad mini with Retina display, but safe to say that did not happen. However thanks to new rumors, it has been suggested that Touch ID could be debuting on this year’s iPads.

Apple appears ready to bring Touch ID fingerprint sensors to the iPad Air and/or iPad mini, code in iOS 7.1’s Touch ID framework suggests. Device identifiers tied to Apple’s “BiometricKit” now include not just the iPhone — prefixed with a 1 — but the iPad lineup, prefixed by a 2. Because the identifiers aren’t specific enough, it’s not clear whether both the Air and the Mini will make the switch, assuming the code isn’t premature. Touch ID has so far been limited to just one product, the iPhone 5s. Apple has never said why, but may have been influenced by design costs and manufacturing scales. A Touch ID sensor requires its own complex circuity and software support, as well as a protective sapphire layer, which is costly to produce.

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