How to make your Android fingerprint reader work every time

finger 2081169 640 - How to make your Android fingerprint reader work every time

You have a lot of options when it comes to unlocking your Android phone, but if your device comes with a fingerprint reader, that’s probably your first choice. It’s so easy to just lay a fingertip on top of the sensor and watch your phone unlock. It’s a convenient solution to phone security and for authorizing certain payments through Google Pay, but it’s not a perfect technology.

Fingerprint readers can cause frustrations, but there are some smart ways to improve the accuracy. Some of it comes down to how you use the reader and some of it involves making tweaks to how you have it set up.

Google cautions, “Fingerprints are an easy way to unlock your phone. But a fingerprint may be less secure than a strong PIN, pattern, or password.” Still, most people are comfortable with the risks when it comes to the convenience of using a fingerprint. Here’s how to make your Android fingerprint reader work even better.

Solving fingerprint problems

Google doesn’t offer a ton of advice when it comes to problems with fingerprint readers working properly. Its main suggestion is to “Be careful to hold your phone in the same way that you normally hold it when unlocking. For example, hold your phone with its screen facing you.” That’s a good point, but there’s even more you can do.

Fingerprint-reader failures can have many causes. Wet fingertips is a big one. You’ve just done the dishes or gotten out of the shower and your phone won’t unlock. Dry your hands and dry the fingerprint sensor on your phone and try again. Some people have reported being able to unlock their phones by registering wet fingers on their devices, which could be worth a try if you often find yourself fumbling to unlock your phone after being out in the rain.

A clean fingerprint sensor is key at any time. Dirt and oils can build on the reader, so give it a cleaning with a soft dry cloth. Another culprit in fingerprint problems is simply how you aim. Make sure your finger is covering the reader and positioned properly over the sensor.

By Amanda Kooser

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