RepairLabs Discovers That the Touch I.D. Scanner on the iPhone 5S is Limited in Its Ability to Scan Fingerprints Coated in Different Substances

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RepairLabs shows which substances cause the new iPhone 5S Touch I.D. Scanner not to be able to process your fingerprint.

RepairLabs Attempt At The Touch ID
Honestly, the things you'd expect to affect it really didn't, like flour. The fact that it didn't work in the cold was a bit disconcerting. Obviously most of us won't be in freezing conditions.

RepairLabs, an express-ship electronics device repair center, has put the hotly anticipated iPhone 5S through several different testing scenarios to see what the circumstances have to be for the new Touch I.D. Scanner implemented into the iPhone 5S to scan and recognize their fingerprint to unlock the device.

With the idea in mind that people will attempt to access their iPhone 5S with all sorts of different substances on their hands, RepairLabs was determined to pinpoint exactly what substances can and cannot be present when attempting to use the new device.

Jason Draper, I.T. Manager and Mac-Certified Technician for RepairLabs, was surprised by the results and had this to say on the subject: "Honestly, the things you'd expect to affect it really didn't, like flour. The fact that it didn't work in the cold was a bit disconcerting. Obviously, most of us won't be in freezing conditions, but if by chance we are, and we cannot unlock our device, it could be really bad!"

The results gathered by RepairLabs, which are accompanied by a video, help showcase exactly what will stop people from accessing their new iPhone 5S if utilizing the Touch I.D. Fingerprint Identity Scanner. iPhone 5S owners can access the device with clean hands, and with the substances of grease or flour present -- as well -- the scanner works while wearing clear latex gloves.

As for the elements that can prevent the iPhone 5S from scanning properly; the cold is a major issue that limits the scanner's functionality, along with grease. The other substances that will stop owners from getting past the security measure include having water, paint, or even dirt on their hands. And while wearing a clear latex glove permitted access, a colored latex glove didn't provide the same results, not allowing them to bypass the Touch I.D. Scanner.


RepairLabs was founded in 2009 to provide consumers with an excellent and affordable repair shop for Apple devices, and has continually expanded until now, where they cover almost all major mobile electronic devices. Nationally recognized as a leading source in repair knowledge, the RepairLabs blog has consistently delivered cutting-edge analysis and reports and has been cited on countless authority news hubs, such as;,, and Learn more at or call 1-888-755-1115.

DJ Dixon
(316) 925-2174

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