When the iPhone 5s hit the market, its built-in fingerprint sensor made the phone stand out. While some devices are trying to build in similarsecurity authentication functions, the tech that's required is fairly limited and requires some unique hardware and software.
But a team from Yahoo has developed a way to do this using your average smartphone.
"In a presentation at the 2015 Computer-Human Interaction Conference (CHI) in Seoul, Yahoo researchers demonstrated a solution called Bodyprint that can scan users' ears, knuckles, palms and fingers when they are pressed against the touchscreen. Capacitive sensors in the screen map the topography of these body parts, which Yahoo says are unique to each individual" reports Planet Biometrics.
Yahoo's paper on the tech notes that "Since all current touchscreens use capacitive sensing, Bodyprint brings reliable biometric authentication to a vast number of commodity devices. Yahoo had twelve participants test the device, resulting in 99.52 percent accuracy rate.
Bodyprint will need to be tested on a wider scale before anyone can truly declare it safe. Who knows? Maybe 3 in 100 people have the same weirdly-shaped knuckles. But if it pans out, bodyprint recognition could be a cheap and effective way to secure devices – not to mention a good excuse to punch your iPhone from time to time, reports Gizmodo.