Microsoft Enables Wearables Authentication for Windows 10

Microsoft developers are working to integrate wearables into Windows 10’s Windows Hello security system, with the aim of letting users perform actions such as unlocking their PCs via the Microsoft Band and other such devices.

Microsoft Enables Wearables Authentication for Windows 10The news comes by way of Computex, where Microsoft representatives explained how updates to the company’s Companion Device Framework will allow third party developers to design products compatible with the Windows Hello platform. The company demonstrated the wearables concept using the Nymi Band, a third party wristband that measures a user’s ECG to establish persistent biometric authentication. That suggests that biometric authentication will remain a central component of Windows Hello security, though some compatible wearables will need to leverage other verification methods in lieu of Nymi’s novel heart scanning capabilities.

For the Microsoft Band, a fitness tracker with some smartwatch-like functionality, authentication will have to work somewhat differently, since it currently cannot authenticate users via cardiac biometrics. But its biometric health data could still be leveraged in some other way, and Microsoft appears intent on doing more with such user information. Last month, the company announced upgrades to its Microsoft Band software as well as improvements that will sync Health app data to other Microsoft devices.

While no specific timelines have been provided for any of these developments, it seems fair to expect them to roll out with the major Windows 10 Anniversary Update expected this summer.

Sources: The Verge, BT

June 2, 2016 – by Alex Perala