large image

Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

This is why the Pixel 6 fingerprint scanner is slow

The Google Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro are two of the finest Android phones around but they do have one annoying trait.

As many users have pointed out, the in-display fingerprint scanners on the new phones aren’t the quickest around. But, according to Google, this isn’t something that will be fixed by a software update.

In a tweet sent from the @madebygoogle account replying to a user claiming the fingerprint sensor ‘is ruining my experience’, Google said the scanner uses ‘enhanced security algorithms’ and that ‘in some instances these added protections can take longer to verify’. Hence the slow speeds.

Google also links the user to a troubleshooting page, though none of the information provided there is that useful.

The Google Pixel 6 uses an optical fingerprint scanner, which is the same tech used by devices from OnePlus, Xiaomi and Oppo. This is different to the ultrasonic tech used by Samsung in its flagship S21 series. Ultrasonic, in our experience, makes for a much faster and reliable experience.

The real issue here is that if you find the fingerprint sensor too slow, there isn’t that much to replace it with aside from the traditional pin unlock. There’s no form of facial unlocking included on the Pixel 6, which is a shame.

This is the first time Google has decided on an in-screen fingerprint sensor. Most previous Pixels, including the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a, have used the far more reliable physical sensor or gone all-in with face unlock.

Fingerprint sensor issues aside, the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are two really impressive devices. In our Pixel 6 review we said “Google’s direction for the Pixel 6 has to be commended. From the chip, to the software and the camera this is one of the few phones I have used this year that feels interesting and actually new.”

While we rounded off our Pixel 6 Pro review by saying “The Pixel 6 Pro is the most advanced phone Google has ever made, featuring a new reworked triple sensor rear camera, LTPO variable refresh rate screen and the firm’s new Tensor silicon. These features, plus its new Android 12 software, add up to earn it a place as one of 2021’s best camera and Android phones.”

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have 9 million users a month around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.