One of the main selling points of the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will be its iris scanner, a feature that we haven’t seen much before. However, there might be some serious usability issues with the new feature.
This video shows someone allegedly using the Note 7′s iris scanner, and it’s ridiculously fast. It looks like an awesome feature. It’s strange that the Note 7 it’s being used on has a flat screen rather than a curved one, but it could be a prototype.
Unfortunately, there are also a lot of downsides to this feature. Samsung’s leaked usage warnings say that the iris scanner should not be used closer than 20cm to prevent harmful effects and to not use it on babies. That sounds reasonable enough. It also says that the sensor should not be used in direct sunlight and that it will have trouble with people wearing glasses or contacts. That means it won’t work properly on sunny days and that it’ll have problems with a big chunk of the population.
Security features like a fingerprint sensor should always work with as few errors as possible. If you have to struggle to unlock your phone, it defeats the purpose. The iris scanner might not work in a lot of situations and for a lot of people, which doesn’t sound good. Samsung may lose every baby customer it has.