The new version of Google’s Android mobile operating system is going to have built-in fingerprint authentication according to a BuzzFeed article by Joseph Bernstein. The OS, called Android M, will debut at the Google I/O developer conference in San Francisco next week.
The native system may actually have been meant to come out with Lollipop and Nexus 6, but for whatever reason was delayed, according to an Ars Technica article by Ron Amadeo. His analysis is based on documentation for what appears to be a fingerprint sensor API that would allow access to multiple apps (including those from third-party developers). While many devices running on Android have built in their own fingerprint sensor technology, Google’s bid to make it native to the OS should have a huge impact in terms of making the technology standard for developers.
It should also go some way in securing Android Pay, which is also likely to launch at Google I/O. When it was initially announced, and Google explained that it would take the form of an API layer open to developers – which turns out to indeed be the case – it raised some questions about security, since at the time there were no specific plans to employ biometric authentication and the like. Now, with the fingerprint-scanning capabilities of Android M, such concerns should be sufficiently allayed.