Big news out yesterday evening from Fingerprint Cards (FPC). The company introduces an improved algorithm optimized for the smartphone segment. The algorithm takes advantage of the market leading image quality of FPC’s fingerprint sensors to deliver industry leading biometric performance and unparalleled security.
Resulting from its continuous R&D efforts, FPC is now releasing an improved algorithm to mobile device manufacturers, applicable for all touch fingerprint sensors in FPC’s product portfolio. The algorithm takes advantage of FPC’s market leading image quality and is specifically optimized for fast execution on smartphone platforms. The algorithm enables improved biometric performance such as faster identification, combined with higher level of robustness and security. This enables smartphone manufacturers to improve security for fingerprint verification without compromising convenience.
As previously announced, FPC has also introduced an offering that can detect spoofs, also referred to as fake fingers. When combining the previously announced anti-spoof feature with the improved algorithm announced today, smartphone manufacturers can provide unparalleled secure fingerprint verification.
Previous releases of FPC’s touch fingerprint sensor solutions have resulted from an in-house developed algorithm that included contributions licensed from third party. The in-house algorithm has been continuously evolving, and FPC now takes the next step to introduce a complete in-house algorithm that does not include any third party contributions.
Jörgen Lantto, President and CEO of FPC, comments: “Today’s announcement shows that our industry leading fingerprint sensor technology enables our customers to offer a unique level of security in their devices. We can bring this forward because of our complete system offering, combining our industry leading image quality with the industry’s best performing algorithm. The improved algorithm, containing no third-party contribution, allows us to further improve our vertically integrated system offering for smartphones. For our customers, the improved algorithm will contribute to further improved security, higher biometric performance and robust user experience”.
In the smartphone segment, the improved algorithm will be progressively introduced. The first two smartphones using the updated algorithm were announced yesterday, April 6th. Units shipping during the remainder of 2016 and parts of 2017 will include either the improved algorithm or the earlier algorithm. In other markets, for example smartcards and wearables, FPC continues to recognize the enabling value contributed from its algorithm partners and such existing collaborations remain strong.
In an interview with a Swedish news agency today, CEO Lantto stated that the launch of its own algorithm leads to somewhat higher margins for Fingerprint Cards. He sees the most important benefit, however, in an improved position in the market. “It’s important that we increase the standard further by launching a better solution. The customer gets a better product and we get a better competitive position. It is our intention to make it harder for our competitors to take business away from us. Our biggest customer Huawei is using the new algorithm in their flagship models, which is an important signal. It is their big product launch during the fist half of 2016 and they are advertising with increased security, which is all about the new algorithm. In terms of margins, “we are paying royalties to Precis Biometrics (so far) and from now on we do not have to do that anymore for the phones that are launched with the new algorithm. We have said that it is a low single-digit percentage of our prices, not more not less.”