1. Akshay Masand's Avatar


    Although Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor continues to remain exclusive to the iPhone and iPad models, Synaptics recently announced that its new SecurePad fingerprint scanning hardware is now available to notebook PC makers. The SecurePad is a 4-by-10 millimeter sensor on the surface of a notebook’s cursor controls and is reportedly being called the “first solution to integrate fingerprint ID technology into the TouchPad.” Furthermore, it activates with the touch of a finger and like Apple’s Touch ID, it supports fingerprint detection at any angle.

    The Synaptics SecurePad is a Fast Identity Online-ready authenticator that supports the use of password-free security. It is set to allow PC manufacturers to implement scanning technology without having to duplicate hardware components. Overall, this should allow for simpler integration into existing notebook designs. Once a user scans their fingerprint when prompted for a password, SecurePad initiates a cryptographically secure challenge and response with an online service provider. Synaptics is claiming that this solution does away with the need to store password databases in the cloud, which allows the solution to further improve security with FIDO-compliant partners.

    Founder, President and principal analyst for Moor Insight and Strategy, Patrick Moorhead, had the following to say regarding the matter:

    Digital security has never been more important to consumers as it is today and while users understand the necessity for protecting their digital information, username and passwords are no longer a reliable method of security against today's cyber threats. The growing adoption of fingerprint ID technology gives OEMs the opportunity to implement modern security solutions that give consumers a convenient and easy-to-use method for protecting their data.
    As a whole, fingerprint scanners have been available in mobile devices for several years but traditionally required an unreliable “swipe” input method. The interest in the technology as a whole was renewed once Apple debuted their Touch ID technology which was released in the iPhone 5S and allowed users to quickly and securely have their fingerprint scanned from any angle. This year, Apple ended up introducing Touch ID in the new iPhone 6, 6 Plus, iPad Air 2 and mini 3. The company even went as far as opening up Touch ID support to third-party developers with iOS 8, allowing applications to be locked and for users to bypass a password entry with their fingertip.

    The Touch ID technology as a whole was made possible thanks to Apple’s acquisition of AuthenTec, the maker of a fingerprint scanning “Smart Sensor” which would eventually act as the foundation for Apple’s solution. The launch of Touch ID is what caused Synaptics to seek out and acquire Validity Sensors last year. As of right now, it hasn’t been indicated whether the technology acquired from Validity Sensors has been utilized in the new SecurePad product but it is safe to assume so.

    We’ll have to wait and see how effective the SecurePad is once PC manufacturers begin to implement it. Furthermore, we’ll have to wait and see if Apple will respond and put similar technology in the Macbook lineup.

    Source: Synaptics via AppleInsider

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2014-12-11 09:57 PM
  2. H4CK3R's Avatar
    I feel like it would get in the way on a trackpad. My fingerprint scanner is to the left of my trackpad and I really like it there, I just can't see it being built into a track pad without being in the way.
    2014-12-12 09:02 PM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD