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Samsung files patent for smartphone eye scanner

Monday, November 25th 2013 by Dean Reilly
Samsung files patent for smartphone eye scanner

A patent filed by Samsung hints that iris scanning might appear in its next-generation smartphones.

A patent application filed by Samsung seems to indicate that next-generation Galaxy smartphones might feature biometric authentication as an alternative to PINs or passwords.

Unlike arch-rival Apple's Touch ID, however, the South Korean technology giant won't be scanning users' fingerprints. Instead, the patent - spotted by blog Patent Bolt - describes a novel iris scanning technique.

According to Samsung, the non-contact nature of eye scanning means handset owners "do not feel uncomfortable" with the technology, while at the same time the iris offers more unique patterns than the fingerprint does.

"The Iris scanning system could apply to any future smartphone, tablet, computer or computing device," the patent application reads.

Earlier this month, technology research firm Gartner warned smartphone manufacturers against copying Apple by including biometric authentication in their next-generation handsets.

"Companies should evaluate biometric controls but be sensitive to the privacy concerns that have been voiced in response to the Touch ID technology," it said.

Just two days after the iPhone 5S went on sale, German hacker collective the Chaos Computer Club claimed to have bypassed the smartphone's biometric sensor by creating fake fingerprints.

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