Samsung Considering Iris Biometrics on Future Smartphones

“Regular readers will recall that this is in sync with a rumor from last autumn that had speculators expecting an iris scanner on the S5. Now with this official statement, it appears that this rumor was just a bit too forward thinking.”

The Samsung Galaxy S5 is notable as a flagship smartphone from a major global OEM that not only has a fingerprint sensor, but offers secure online payments with it. Launched in April, the newest Galaxy smartphone shipped with the capability to authorize PayPal transactions with the touch of a finger.

Now, thanks to a recent comment made by Samsung senior vice president Rhee In-jong, it looks like the courtship between the Galaxy line of smartphones and biometrics isn’t going to end anytime soon.

As first reported by Min-Jeong Lee from the Wall Street Journal, during a gathering in Hong Kong that brought investors to the company, Rhee In-jong commented: “We’re looking at  various types of biometric [mechanisms] and one of things that everybody is looking at is iris detection.”

Regular readers will recall that this is in sync with a rumor from last autumn that had speculators expecting an iris scanner on the S5. Now with this official statement, it appears that this rumor was just a bit too forward thinking.

Rhee In-jong went on to say that these next generation smartphone authentication sensors will likely start off on high end models, recognizing that biometrics are a trend that Samsung is now decidedly following.

The promise of biometric sensors on even economy priced smartphone models is exciting in terms of BYOD and mCommerce applications, but as always with these mainstream OEMs, this is technology taste-making. It is always important to keep in mind that biometrics aren’t exclusive to devices that feature the hardware. Biometric software is available for mobile devices that can reverse engineer face, voice, fingerprint, eyeprint and even ear recognition on phones from the previous generation.