19 December 2018
Going by the recent commits in Chrome OS, Chromebooks may soon support native fingerprint scanning. The latest piece of code suggests an enrollment process right after the standard login and that the feature has been added to the system level.
Biometrics aren’t a new feature to laptops and notebooks however Chromebooks are getting them for the first time. The code updates suggest that the new UI will be pushed forward for fingerprint enrollment on the devices with compatible hardware.
The entire setup and enrollment work similar to Android devices. After the log-in screen, the users are prompted to enroll the fingerprint. The progress indicator fills up on the screen when the fingerprint enrollment is in the process and relevant alerts for unsuccessful enrolments are in place. The system would also prompt the user if the scanner is not clean or if the user needs to follow a certain process. Once the registration is complete, the user gets a successful scan alert as well. The commits suggest that there is an option to reset the fingerprints stored already and can store up to three fingerprints. These fingerprints can be used to unlock the device as well as approve purchases.
The current generation of Chromebooks launched at IFA 2018 from Lenovo, Acer, and Dell does not feature a fingerprint sensor. However, Google is set to launch a new Pixelbook and a tablet with a detachable keyboard. This Chromebook, codenamed Nocturne, is said to feature a fingerprint scanner. It won't be surprising if the new Pixelbook features facial recognition too.