5 tips for getting the most out of Touch ID

iPhone /

Many people didn't know what to think about Apple's Touch ID when it first came out. Some people think it's unreliable or can't be trusted to work correctly. But rather than write it off, other iPhone users began to adapt to its new-age functionality, figuring out some tips and tricks along the way.

Touch ID can be a very useful tool on the iPhone and help to increase convenience when used correctly. Here is some advice if you find your Touch ID not working in the ways you expect it to:

1) Further training
When Touch ID is first enabled, it scans in the user's fingers. This trains the system to recognize an approved sets of prints. But some people believe that this alone is not enough. According to iMore contributor Allyson Kazmucha, it is possible to go into “Touch ID” under “Settings” and repeat the scanning process for a more accurate record.

“Supposedly this method overtrains Touch ID further than what the initial registration does which results in better accuracy,” Kazmucha wrote. “I personally have never had issues with Touch ID but I've had friends who have and I've recommended this to them. Some are claiming it has worked but the key is to move your finger in very small increments at a time so each registered print has the best overall image of your print.”

2) Don't press the button!
A phrase like “the button” has often called to mind a world-ending missile strike. But in terms of the Touch ID system, its implications are far less dangerous. That doesn't make them irritating, however.

Some people may have trouble with Touch ID because they are physically pressing down on the Home button rather than just… well, touching it. Try being a little less aggressive towards that little piece of plastic and just go with the flow.

3) Take another look at your finger
Have you ever had a bad cut on your hand? Perhaps a scar on your fingertip? According to MacWorld contributor Serenity Caldwell, this kind of thing can impede Touch ID accuracy.

“If you have a mark or cut on your thumb that makes fingerprint analysis and reading difficult, you may have to retire that finger from Touch ID use and instead try one of your other digits,” Caldwell stated.

Furthermore, if the finger in question is wet then a clear read can also be difficult to obtain. Caldwell specifically pointed to “raisin fingers” after a shower as a potential cause of scan failure.

4) Clean the sensor
It may sound silly, but if there's a little bit of dirt on the Touch ID sensor, you may have found your problem! Make sure no dust or gunk is preventing the finger from making complete contact with the ring around the Home button. That little metal circle is what actually makes Touch ID work, so having it clean can make all the difference in the world.

5) Seek warmer locales
The iPhone is not a seasonal device. People use them year-round and in every kind of situation. This can present problems when it gets cold out. According to Caldwell, the basic science behind Touch ID won't be able to occur if temperatures get low enough.

“When checking your finger against stored information, the sensor scans both your fingerprint and the underlying layer of skin, called your subdermis,” Caldwell stated. “In order to do this, the sensor looks to see if your finger can conduct electricity and heat. (Yes, this means that a supervillain cannot chop off your finger and then use it to access the top secret information on your gadgets.) If your digits have been out in the cold, however, they'll register as less conductive on the scanner, and that may prevent Touch ID from letting you in.”

Still having trouble?
If you've tried these things over and over again to no avail, then the problem probably isn't you – it's your phone. The iPhone is just like any other device in that it can break or occasionally be defective right out of the box. Is your iPhone 5c home button not working, or has the Touch ID stopped responding? Contact iResQ today for all of your iPhone repair needs.

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