Apple may have introduced biometric authentication to the masses when it added TouchID fingerprint recognition to the iPhone 5s, but Samsung is poised to bring even more advanced biometric technology to mobile devices. This week, the company signed an exclusive licensing agreement with SRI International, a non-profit research center that creates technology for companies or the government, to add its Iris on the Move (IOM) technology to Samsung’s mobile devices. IOM is a biometric system that uses iris recognition for security and identity authentication.
B2B enterprises will be the first to experience the technology firsthand. For now, IOM will be limited to Samsung mobile devices specifically designed for B2B applications. The first IOM-enabled device, the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 tablet, will debut in a few weeks at the SIA New Product Showcase at ISC West 2015. Following the reveal, the device will be available for purchase through SRI partners and resellers. Pricing information has yet to be released. SRI claims IOM’s iris-scanning technology is faster than competitors that require users to stop or position their eyes close to a camera, IOM designed for users to “glance and go.”
Samsung has lost market share to Apple as more and more workers and businesses are choosing Apple devices for work. The added security of iris-based authentication could shift the tide in Samsung’s favor. According to SRI, tests of IOM show it is 1,000 times more accurate than published fingerprint data. This could be a major selling point to high-security industries. SRI points out IOM technology is well suited to airports, access control, workforce management or any other sector needing effortless identity authentication.
“The next-generation IOM iris recognition solution will create new applications and markets and increase adoption in existing markets,” Mark Clifton, president of Products and Solutions at SRI International said in a statement about the Samsung collaboration.
SRI may not be a household name, but millions are familiar with an earlier innovation the company brought to smartphones. As Android Authority reported, in December 2007, SRI formed a spin-off company called Siri, Inc. Three years later in April 2010, Apple acquired the smaller company and Siri, the personal voice assistant on Apple devices, was introduced a year later.
Samsung is confident technology has a prominent place in the future business-to-business relations. Earlier this month, the company brought all enterprise-focused business units together under the banner of Samsung Business. The move, announced by Dr. Won-Pyo Hong, president of Samsung Electronics, cemented the technology company’s commitment to business. Over the past 12 months the South Korea-based technology conglomerate has announced several enterprise-focused partnerships and products. In 2014, Samsung partnered with SAP to develop mobile applications across several industries, including retail, finance and health care. Microsoft will also help enhance Samsung’s business profile. A recently announced joint effort gives buyers of new B2B devices access to Microsoft Office 365 and KNOX Samsung’s security solution. Last year also saw the introduction of Samsung’s first B2B-only Tablet, the Galaxy Tab Active. Features include: an anti-shock covering that can withstand a 4-foot drop; water and dust resistance with IP67 certification; a 3.1 mega-pixel camera that can scan barcodes; and a C-Pen, a stylus which provides professionals an alternative input option to their finger.
Overall, the B2B sector is becoming more comfortable with technology as wearables, bring your own device, cloud-based software and the Internet of Things become more common. Embracing technology is a win-win, businesses can find tools to improve their businesses by enabling a mobile workforce, reducing IT spend and data analysis, while technology-makers gain access to a stable and growing market. Security is a major concern for most businesses when evaluating a new technology. If the IOM-enabled Galaxy Tab is a success, the industry can expect to see a greater investment in advanced biometric and security protocols.