Apple kicked off the week with another big product announcement, this time for the new iPad Air. The company made a big splash in September with the inclusion of its Touch ID fingerprint sensors feature on the new iPhone 5S, but the new Apple tablet, though remarkable in every other aspect, does not contain the biometric security that makes it’s fall launch partner remarkable in the realm of mobile authentication.
It’s no secret that when it comes to smartphones, Apple’s big competitor is Samsung, whose Galaxy series of mobile devices are the choice alternative to the iPhone. Plenty of speculation has been circulating in regards to how the next Samsung phone, the Galaxy S5, will respond to Touch ID. Despite what the bogus press release of last week would lead some to believe, Samsung has told the Korean Herald that it is not developing fingerprint technology for its offerings. Rumors surfaced this week that the Korean tech company isn’t forsaking strong authentication, but looking in a different direction: iris recognition.
Keeping an eye on Korea: Pantech launched it’s newest Phablet this week and it does feature fingerprint sensors for security purposes. The better-than-password protection on the Vega Secret Note comes courtesy of Fingerprint Cards AB, whose technology is also featured on the company’s first biometric smartphone which was launched in August.
The biometrics on mobile devices don’t only have applications in security. OBJE announced this week that its gaming division, Obscene Games, is working with Electronic Arts and Activision on videogames that leverage biometrics in order to improve player experience. Applications that have been mentioned in this area include social games that can detect when players are lying and horror experiences that measure a gamer’s fear and cater to it in gameplay.
Touching back on the Apple announcement, one of the biggest conversation starters out of the California keynote was the decision to provide the new OS X Maverick and iOS 7 to users for free. It’s convenient then, that a day before this announcement was made, LaserLock Technologies released a new version of its VerifyMe single-sign-on solution, optimized for iOS 7. Now that the newest iOS is free for iPhone and iPad users, VerifyMe won’t only add functionality to the Touch ID, but users with previous generation iDevices will have access to the updated LaserLock app without having to pay for an operating system upgrade.