IDEMIA, Zwipe Partner on Simplified, Low-Cost Biometric Payment Card

“… IDEMIA and Zwipe say that their solution will be distinguished by its relatively small number of components, with things like the Secure Element and the microcontroller all embedded in a single chip mounted on a flexible Printed Circuit Board.”

IDEMIA, Zwipe Partner on Simplified, Low-Cost Biometric Payment Card

IDEMIA and Zwipe have teamed up on a biometric payment card solution that they are aiming to bring to market in the second half of next year, the companies have announced.

The companies did not specify in their announcement what kind of biometric mechanism will be used in their payment card solution, but given Zwipe’s expertise in fingerprint sensors, it will presumably be a fingerprint-scanning card along the lines of other biometric payment cards that have been in development over the last couple of years. But IDEMIA and Zwipe say that their solution will be distinguished by its relatively small number of components, with things like the Secure Element and the microcontroller all embedded in a single chip mounted on a flexible Printed Circuit Board.

This approach reduces the complexity and the cost of the design and production process, the companies say, which will enable accelerated mass production and time to market.

The companies indicated that IDEMIA will have proprietary ownership of the technology, while Zwipe will have “worldwide exclusive rights” to provide it to producers of payment cards and other payment solutions such as wearables.

“We are very excited about what this platform will enable in terms of market growth and the penetration of biometric payment cards,” commented IDEMIA Financial Institutions VP Amanda Gourbault in a statement announcing the collaboration. “IDEMIA is delighted to partner with Zwipe, a company with a solid intellectual property portfolio and an expanding global customer network; we are confident that our new solution will command a leading position in the marketplace.”

News of the collaboration arrives just days after Zwipe’s announcement that it had teamed up with Giesecke + Devrient Mobile Security on a “biometric payment device“. G+D had partnered with IDEMIA earlier this year to form the White Label Alliance, a consortium aimed at establishing global payments standards.

IDEMIA and Zwipe say that cards based on their joint solution will first hit the market in H2 of 2020, with high-volume deployments to follow in 2021.