A new set of patents filed by Samsung have surfaced which show future flagship smartphones from the company could emulate Apple's iPhone round home button into its design structure. The button will most likely be installed for improving the phone's fingerprint scanning abilities.
Patently Mobile reports that there are two distinct sketches in the patent filing. While one places the button towards the lower central portion of the front side of the phone the other puts it at the rear side of the phone.
While it is not known which button is for which purpose in the figure, module number 60 is described as sensor module for detecting or receiving a signal from outside. This does not mean it has to necessarily be a fingerprint sensor and can be other sensors as a camera module, a proximity sensor or an infrared sensor.
Samsung traditionally has the home button as the main navigation button like the iPhone but it is not round in structure as shown in the patent sketches. Moreover it seems less likely that Samsung will do away with its traditional navigation button and may just stick to changing its design.
As for the button at the rear end some manufacturers have put the fingerprint sensors at the spot so it may be possible that Samsung does that too. In case Samsung totally does away with the round navigation button on the front it will become a fingerprint sensor exclusively, a feature we have seen in some recent phone models like the Moto G4 Plus.
The status of the patents is not yet known: whether it is in approval stage or has just been filed. Patents are subjected to a lot of research and test until they can be turned into a practical idea and many of them never see the light of the day.