Apple has been granted a patent for a new, two-step screen-unlocking feature that incorporates biometrics. A report by Patently Apple dissects the recent patent in detail.
Utilizing integrated biometrics, the Apple patent could also see use in e-commerce transactions. Apple has been refining next wave e-commerce security features using biometrics for some time and the newly awarded patent may lay the groundwork for the next generation of Apple devices.
As part of Apple’s biometric efforts, the company acquired fingerprint sensor technology developer AuthenTec in July 2012 for an estimated $365 million. Apple is certainly aligning itself for the impending e-commerce race, which hopes to give consumers a secure means of transaction processing.
The proposed fingerprint solution will likely incorporate a polymer dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC) window, which would conceal the components of the electronic device behind a window that can alternate between opaque and transparent. This configuration would allow for the fingerprint sensor to be seamlessly housed within the device’s screen and be visible during transaction while remaining undetectable when not in use.
The Apple patent suggests that the new fingerprint sensor system could see implementation in the company’s iPod touch, iPod nano, iPad and MacBook devices. Additionally, the patent suggests that Apple devices’ cameras could see use in iris or facial recognition.
Read the full Patently Apple article and see the patent itself here.