A Welsh startup is aiming to further disrupt the smartphone fingerprint sensor market with extremely cheap sensor technology.
Called Touch Biometrix, the firm, which is based in the small town of St. Asaph, recently received £150,000 in seed funding from Chester-based Deepbridge Capital. The company was founded last year, and has announced in a statement that it’s driven by “the aim of becoming one of the top five fingerprint sensor suppliers in the world by 2023.”
It may seem a curious ambition as the current market leaders reckon with fading fortunes, thanks to high saturation in the mobile fingerprint sensor market and shrinking costs and margins. But Touch Biometrix is aiming to push those trends even further, with CEO Mike Cowin asserting, “Our new manufacturing model is set to disrupt the market in terms of performance and cost, at less than $1 a unit.” Cowin added that Touch Biometrix’s fingerprint sensors will be “[f]ast, secure and impossible to spoof”.
While Touch Biometrix will face serious competition from established players that are also intent on cutting costs and prices, it may also need to reckon with a shift to other biometric modalities. Fingerprint sensors are currently considered a standard feature for smartphones, but Apple, an industry leader, headed in a new direction last autumn when it abandoned the technology in favor of facial recognition on its iPhone X, and more OEMs could follow suit. Meanwhile, other OEMs have pursued in-display fingerprint recognition as the next phase for this biometric technology, apparently at a considerable cost in terms of R&D.
Nevertheless, Touch Biometrix is certainly talking the talk, and thanks to Deepbridge Capital it has a nice bit of change to kick things off.
May 14, 2018 – by Alex Perala