My girlfriend keeps bugging me that she wants to be able to unlock my Android phone with her fingerprint. I’m fine with adding her, but how do you add a second fingerprint? Running Android 9.0.
On Android devices that support fingerprint scanning and unlocking, it’s pretty easy to add a second fingerprint, whether you want to have two of your own fingers or add someone else’s fingerprint so they can unlock the device too. Without a fingerprint sensor, well, you’re outta luck, but Android does also support more than one face for face unlock too. You’re also lucky that you’re running the latest version of Android too, Android 9.0 “Pie”. I mean, who doesn’t like pie? 🙂
What I always recommend with security access is that you clearly document what you’ve done so that if you go back in a few weeks, months or even years, you’ll know what’s going on and whose fingerprint is whose. As part of this tutorial, therefore, I’ll show you how to assign mnemonic names to the different fingerprint scans and even how to delete a fingerprint if things veer off course with your girlfriend. Can’t be too safe and secure, right?
To start, unlock your Android phone and go into Settings. Now search for “finger”:
There are a number of options, including “Swipe fingerprint for notifications”, something I believe is unique to the Google Pixel 3 at this point. You guessed it, I’m using a Pixel 3 XL for my testing and demonstration too.
What you want is the Pixel Imprint service, actually, so tap on “Pixel Imprint” in the search results. You’ll be taken to the Security & location area of Settings:
Pixel Imprint is already highlighted, so it’s easy to remember that’s where you want to tap. Tap on it. If you don’t have a Pixel, your display might be slightly different, but here’s what I then see:
To add an additional fingerprint it’s not rocket science to tap on the ingeniously labeled “Add fingerprint“. Do so and you’ll then have to hand the phone over to your girlfriend so she can tap on the sensor and have it read all her biometric data:
It’s pretty darn easy to tap and keep slightly adjusting the angle of your finger as you proceed. It won’t take long for her to finally see this display on the screen:
That’s really all you need to do, so tap “Done”. Then again, remember earlier I said it’s smart to record what you’ve done so you can keep track later on when you might migrate phones or might need to get rid of the second fingerprint for some reason or other? Let’s do that.
First off, tap “Done” and you’ll end up here:
What’s not obvious is that you can rename the scanned fingerprints by simply tapping on their current label. So perhaps I want to have “Me” and “Michelle” as my two fingerprints. That’s quite easily done, leaving me with this:
And, of course, if things go south with Michelle, I can delete her fingerprint and prevent her from unlocking my phone by simply tapping on the trashcan icon. Easy enough!
That’s it. Now you know everything you need about fingerprint scanning and security on your Android Pie smartphone or tablet.
Pro Tip: We have lots and lots of Android help and tutorials on the site, please do check it all out while you’re here!