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Facial Recognition Biometrics to Dominate Smartphones?

February 22, 2018

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Biometrics go hand in hand with smartphones these days. It’s hard to find a smartphone that doesn’t come with a biometric option, usually fingerprint scanning. But will the iPhone’s switch to facial recognition biometrics spark a similar trend?

Facial Recognition Biometrics to Dominate Smartphones

Facial Recognition Biometrics boom

Research by Counterpoint has suggested a biometric facial recognition boom is coming. In 2017, only five per cent of smartphones shipped that included facial recognition biometrics technology. The researchers believe however, that is set to grow to 23 per cent in 2018. And then by 2019, it believes 40 per cent of smartphone models will ship with facial recognition biometrics and 64 per cent in 2020. It predicts that more than a billion smartphones with the technology will be shipped in 2020 alone.

The researchers believe that Apple’s 3D facial recognition technology will trigger other model manufacturers to follow in their footsteps. We did see a similar trend with fingerprint tech. As is often the case with Apple, they were not the first to introduce such tech but certainly popularised it.

Will consumers bite?

Predictions are all well and good, but in practice, will facial recognition biometrics have the same market penetration as fingerprints in the smartphone market? It will come down to what consumers want.

And while facial recognition biometrics is a step up above passwords and pins, are they really an improvement over fingerprints. It’s questionable. They might have a cool factor at the moment, but their convenience over fingerprint biometrics is in doubt. Peter Richardson, Research Director at Counterpoint said:

“Although Face ID may not be the most convenient way to unlock a phone under all situations, it is well-suited for applications that require higher security, such as mobile payments, and where speed is not necessarily of the essence.”

Those backing facial recognition biometrics will hope a perceived increase security will help the tech take off.

Here at BioStore, we believe fingerprint scanning still provides the best balance between convenience and security. In our solutions for organisations, it is what we use to make the services in the workplace or school incredibly simple and easy to use. Fingerprint scanning at this point is a tried and tested, reliable method of securely authenticating office workers or students.

When it comes to workplace identification solutions, it’s the way to go, but in the smartphone world, fingerprint biometrics has tough competition on its hands.

Counterpoint: More than one billion smartphones to feature facial recognition in 2020

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