Apple Adds Biometrics, Snubs NFC Again

By: Brian Rhodes, Published on Sep 11, 2013

iPhones will soon have fingerprint readers. Few brands have Apple's immense market impact, and physical security increasingly takes its cues from smartphone design. Will the millions of Apple fanbois singlehandedly make fingerprints the hottest fashionable credential? Does this development spell doom for NFC's access control adoption? We take a look in this note.

[NOTE: For background, see our Fingerprint for Access Control tutorial.]

Fingerprint *******

**** ********** ** * 'future *******', ***** *** announced * *********** ****** will ** ******** ** its ****** ** *******. *** ****** **** be ******** ** *** footprint ******** ** *** 'home******', *** ***** ********* the **** ******* ********, adds * ********** ********* ring *** *********** *******. The ********** ****** ** shown *****:

***** ***** ******* *** pending, ***** *** ******** preliminary ***** ** *** sensor:

********* ******:** ******** **** ** Optical ******, *** ************* contact '**********' **** ****** measures ********** ********** ** fingerprints, *** ********** ********** characteristics ** *** ***** into * ****-****** ***** of ************. ***** ********** sensors *** ****, *** power, *** ***********, **** generally *** *** ** reliable ** ******** ** the ******* ****.

********* ********: ****** **** ******* the ********* ***** ** skin, ***** **** **** the ****** ** **** prints ** ****** ******* the *******. **** *** only ****** ******** ** small **** ** ******* contamination, *** ** ******** a ******* ** '****-********' ********** ******* ****** prints.

** *** ***** *****, Apple ********* **** ******* they **** '***** **' technology:

Implementation *******

******* ******* ********** ** Apple's *** ** *** sensor, ***** **** ****** locking/unlocking ** *** ****** include:

  • *** **** ** *****:*** *********** ************** ******** is ****** ** *** device ****. **** *********** is *** ****** ******** else (**:******), *********** ******* ***** and ******.
  • ******** *******:***** ** *** ** used ** *********** **** passcodes, ** *** ******* layer ** ************** ** device/app ********.

***** ********* **** '***** ID' **** ** * user ****** ** **** down ***/****** *********, ** even ****** ** ******** apps ** *** ******.

Cupertino ***** ***, *****

**** *** ****** **, Apple **** ***** ********* including *** ** *** device, *** ******* **** to ******* *** *** security ********* ****** *****. While ***** ********** ***** 'security ********' ** ************* in ******** *** **********,******* ******* *** **** patent ******* ******* '** *********** ********* technology' **** ** *** to ** ********, *** absolutely *** ***, *** someday ** *********** ** iPhones.

*** ********* ** *** is ********** ******** ** the ****** ******* ******, where **** ***** *** technology ** ** '*** **** *** *****'. *******, **** ****** of**% ** *** ** smartphone ****** (~**% ********) ******** *** ******, the ********** **** ******* no ****** ** *** primetime **** ******.

Biometric ****

*** ********* ***** ** much ****** ********* ** Apple. **** ********** *** individual ******** **** **** from *** *******, *** if ***** ******** '*********** technology' * ******** ******** element, ***** ********** **** follow? **** *** ****** 5S ****** *** ******** for *** ****-****** ********** boom ** ********** ****** control? ** **** **** sharp **** **** ** the **** *****.

Comments (4)

Just like the Dick Tracy two-way wrist radio ('50s) and the Star Trek flip-open communicator ('60s), popular media concepts tend to influence designers. Fingerprints "technology" has long making appearances in spy, CSI and futuristuc movies and TV shows. I think it's just a matter of "when" for widespread adoption. Yes, there will be security and privacy concerns for many of the implementations, but the convenience of that authentication factor, if "good enough" for popular consumer use, it could lead to increased commercial security application for fingerprint technology. (60 years later, you can buy a Dick Tracy two-way radio on Amazon. We've almost all owned a flip phone at one time or another.)

Great Apple marketing as usual, but is this really such a great and useful feature on a phone? Office laptops often have a finger print reader, but I wonder how many people actually use it. I wish Apple made the iPhone water proof, that would have been a much more useful feature (for me anyways) than this finger print reader. I also wished Apple made the iPhone cheaper, and they did with the iPhone 5C :-)

The one thing that I like about it, is that the reader is integrated in to a position where a person already clicks on, so it requires no additional movement / 'click'.

That said, it's sad to see that, in general, Apple has lost its momentum and has so quickly returned to Earth since Job's passing.

Ideally Capacitive sensors are more accurate compared to Optical sensors. Optical sensors can cause more FRR and FAR where are comparatively it is less with Capacitive sensors... and Capacitive sensors are costlier too!

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