Consumer Biometrics Month: 4 Easy End User Experiences

Consumer biometrics hinge on premium user experience. While the proposition of biometrics has always been higher security with greater convenience, the second half of that equation weighs heavier when it comes to consumer adoption. Fingerprint or selfie based security on a given device must be more convenient and comfortable to use than a password, PIN, or key for the mainstream to latch on to it as physical or logical access control solution. For Consumer Biometrics Month we are taking a look at the various user experiences helping biometrics gain traction in everyday use. Take a look:

Unlocking your Smartphone

Consumer Biometrics Month: 4 Easy End User ExperiencesIn an audience poll during the most recent FindBiometrics webinar, we asked attendees where they used biometrics the most, and the majority answer was no surprise: unlocking their personal mobile devices was the number one daily use of biometric authentication. The use case is popular for obvious reasons: biometrics are simply easier to use for unlocking smartphones than PINs, patterns, and passwords. The most friction a user will encounter using mobile biometrics for this purpose is a false rejection, or, upon restarting the device, having to use multifactor security for an initial login. Otherwise it’s smooth sailing. You don’t forget your fingerprint, you can’t lose your iris.

Fingerprint sensors are on the verge of smartphone ubiquity, with the latest research indicating that by the end of the decade, every operational smartphone will sport the security feature that grants access with a single touch. Contactless modalities are on the verge of becoming mainstream for this use too, with iris recognition on Samsung Galaxy devices and 3D facial recognition on the verge of a major breakthrough in consumer devices like the upcoming iPhone 8. Each of these options for initial device access is more secure than the password, PIN and pattern alternatives, but the real appeal for the average user is simplicity.

Shopping With Alexa

Consumer Biometrics Month: 4 Easy End User ExperiencesArtificial intelligence is at the core of the Smart Home, and the Smart Home is how today’s tech savvy consumers are interfacing with the Internet of Things. Thermostats, TVs, door locks, light bulbs and more are all accessed through smart home hubs like Amazon Echo via speech recognition enabled by Alexa AI. Users speak their commands and Alexa complies. And while environmental controls are the initial IoT use cases for such technology, new innovations are allowing users to contactlessly shop for items by simply speaking their needs aloud at home where Alexa can hear them.

It’s a logical extension of Amazon’s initial IoT shopping push in the recent era of dash buttons – small devices that could be pushed to order specific household items like laundry detergent. Now, speech recognition improves the user experience by expanding the range of products that can be ordered remotely, and removing the need for a physical contact point. While the speaker recognition features on Alexa aren’t necessarily as bolstered as the voiceprint authentication in phone banking applications, nothing beats the convenience of ordering dinner by speaking, “Alexa, buy my favorite pizza.”

Securing Your Bike

Consumer Biometrics Month: 4 Easy End User ExperiencesProviding the best user experience means meeting consumers needs without compromise. Locks and keys are a part of our everyday life, and while there is room for improvement with the addition of biometrics, any new physical access solution must perform at least as well as the analog alternative. A perfect example of this is the TouchLock Bike biometric lock from BIO-key.

The TouchLock bike is a robust cable lock that functions with the same assurance of its low-tech lock-and key predecessor. The difference, of course, being that the TouchLock requires no keys, just the presentation of your fingerprint. For further options, a Bluetooth Low-energy version is available too, allowing for remote unlocking via a smartphone app. Again here we see the perfect set up for consumer adoption: improved convenience with zero compromise.

Accessing Your Car

The connected car is on the verge of becoming a major contact point between consumers and biometric technology as auto manufacturers continue to partner with major IT companies and security vendors, aiming to enhance driver experience and make cars safer. While biometrics aren’t yet fully commercialized in this field, mostly appearing on smart car prototypes at trade shows, fingerprint, face and iris recognition are all being floated as access control features for the vehicles of the future.

Delta ID, which was recently acquired by Fingerprint Cards, showcased a rear view mirror with embedded iris scanning capabilities at this year’s CES. Jaguar Land Rover, meanwhile, is working on facial recognition tech that can identify a driver as she approaches her vehicle, unlocking the door before she reaches the handle. Steering wheel fingerprint sensors, voice recognition, and even cardiac biometrics are all ready to be built into cars intended for everyday driving, and while they improve safety and security, the major appeal for the user is contactless convenience that responds to her uniqueness.


Stay posted to FindBiometrics throughout June as we continue to shine the spotlight on consumer biometrics. Be sure to follow us on Twitter so you don’t miss a beat.

Consumer Biometrics Month is made possible by BIO-key