Last year, we forecasted that the mobile biometric security market would grow to 39 million users by 2015 said Alan Goode, founder and MD of Goode Intelligence. This was based on the expectation that initial growth would come from two biometric modalities; embedded fingerprint sensors and voice biometrics. The news that Apple is buying fingerprint sensor specialist AuthenTec further supports the evidence for this exciting trend.
In its recent Analyst Report, Mobile Phone Biometric Security Analysis and Forecasts 2011 2015 , Goode Intelligence stated they were following the market closely and watching how vendors such as Apple are building up their capabilities in this market. Apple acquired Siri Inc. in 2010 and then a year later in 2011 they integrated the voice-based personal assistant into iOS 5. Siri gives Apple the potential to move into voice biometrics and is a perfect authentication solution across a wide range of consumer devices including smart phone, tablet and TV the agile gatekeeper for cloud-based services. Goode added that we are equally excited with the potential that AuthenTecs mobile security portfolio can now give Apple and we wouldnt be surprised if we start to see fingerprint sensors appearing in future Apple products.
Goode Intelligence predicts that mobile biometric security will become a standard feature in SMDs as these devices become the prime computer in both our personal and business life. Whether it is for protecting the physical device or for providing strong authentication and identity verification for a remote service, such as NFC-based mobile payments, mobile phone-based biometrics can offer a wide variety of solutions the third factor in the palm of your hand.
This is backed up by forecasts made in the report that shows that conditions are now right to create a strong market for biometric technology in mobile phones and predicts significant adoption rates over the next three to four years.
According to Goode Intelligence, market adoption for mobile biometric security will be due to three key factors:
- Smart Mobile Devices (SMDs) are now the personal device of choice; with sales outpacing PCs. The bring your own device (BYOD) trend is accelerating the need for enhanced security as SMDs are being used more often for consumer and business-sensitive activities including:
a. storing sensitive data and
b. connecting to network-services that allows access to private and business-critical information.
- SMDs are set to become the prime portal for our private and business lives but we are still relying on last-century technology to:
a. protect devices and
b. provide authentication and identity verification services for Apps and network-based services.
- An opportunity to leverage the unique technological characteristics of SMDs for Biometric Security purposes. Examples of these opportunities include:
a. device protection. Research shows that the current measures to protect our devices, e.g. PINs and Pattern-based identification, are not adequate to protect SMDs against even novice attacks
b. next generation identification and authentication technology that supports mobile users and does not rely on expensive specialist hardware, such as tokens and smartcards
c. the replacement of specialised and expensive biometric capture and verification equipment that is used in the field by law enforcement, government and military users and
d. the ability to augment identity verification solutions to support the growing NFC-based mobile commerce industry, including mobile payments at the point of sale.