Apple ruined Motorola’s fingerprint sensor plans with an acquisition


When Motorola was working on the Nexus 6 back in 2012, the company was working alongside AuthenTec to bring a fingerprint sensor to the smartphone. Unfortunately, Apple beat them to the punch by acquiring AuthenTec for around $356 million and then debuted a fingerprint sensor on its own iPhone 5S. 

That small, finger-sized dimple on the back of the Nexus 6 was supposed to be for more than just balancing the oversized device. It turns out Motorla intended to include a fingerprint sensor on the phone, which could have created all kinds of software possibilities. But while Motorola was working on putting this kind of technology into its phones in 2012, Apple bought AuthenTec, the pioneering biometric security company that Motorola was working with, for $356 million. That didn’t leave Motorola enough time to start over with another company to get a working sensor ready for the Nexus 6’s debut last year. Apple beat them to the gate, debuting a fingerprint sensor in the iPhone 5s.

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