fido alliance, fingerprint recognition, EgisTec
Biometric identification. African-american woman scanning face with facial recognition system on smartphone. Source: Adobe Stock.

In line with recent efforts, Apple is reportedly testing new features to accelerate terminating password authentication, replacing it with faster and more secure biometric data. Oppo, Samsung, and Vivo are also following the trends. Industry watchers believe Taiwanese biometric authentication IC designers, such as Egis Technology Inc. (EgisTec), Elan Microelectronics, and FocalTech Systems Co. will also benefit from the current trends.

Secured biometric information via WebAuthn

The prominent tech giant announced in the ‘Move Beyond Passwords’ developer session at the WWDC conference on new iCloud keychain features that allow users to log in with Passkeys that operate much like passwords, except for linking biometric data such as fingerprints and face ID to them. 

The Passkeys biometric data is based on the WebAuthn Protocol, meaning that faceprints and fingerprints are stored locally on the individual’s device in a special enclave, ensuring scans do not go to cloud storage and remain private.

This feature will first debut in the upcoming operating systems – Mac Monterey and iOS 15.

Tech giants join the Fido Alliance for a password-less future

Apple pioneers in biometric authentication and is known for being particularly strict with security issues. The company joined the Fido Alliance as a board-level member in February 2020, along with Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Line. The Fido Alliance is an open industry association focused on diminishing reliance on password authentication.

Among the board members, the sole Taiwanese IC designer is EgisTec. EgisTec specializes in biometric authentication and excels in optical under-display fingerprint sensor technologies. Their fingerprint scanners are adopted by Samsung and various Chinese smartphone brands.

EgisTec, the biometric authentication IC designer reaps

According to the IC designer, EgisTec has become the second largest fingerprint sensor supplier worldwide and has earned an ‘AI on Chip’ development subsidiary in 2019 by the Economic Ministry to integrate AI solutions. 

Earlier this year, EgisTec partnered Auo Display Plus into developing the largest ultra-thin LTPS TFT fingerprint sensor module. Integrated under OLED panel, it comes with an ultra-large sensing area taking up a third of the screen. This technology made its first appearance in the Touch Taiwan 2021 event.

Touchpad solutions provider, Elan Microelectronics, has incorporated AI algorithms into their capacitive scanners. Five of the top PC laptops including Chromebooks use their biometric scanners. With a growing presence amid the stay-at-home economy, Elan is currently planning to enter the smartphone market.

FocalTech’s under-display fingerprint scanners are seeking expansions among Chinese smartphone brands.


Source: CommercialTimes(1), CommercialTimes(2), MoneyDJ

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