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Amazing iris scanner lets you unlock your phone and pay bills with your eyes

Move over, Touch ID, because iris scanning technology is coming to secure smartphones in the very near future. Security software maker Delta ID unveiled its new ActiveIris Technology, which will allow you to use your eyes’ irises instead of passwords.

Delta ID’s iris recognition software can work with your smartphone, tablet, and laptop. The ActiveIris hardware is miniature and consists of a LED light and infrared camera, which read the patterns of your iris to retrieve the “password.” Setting up ActiveIRIS on your phone is easy, as users simply create “templates” of both eyes by taking a photo. The templates are stored on the phone and users’ eyes can be recognized from up to 50 centimeters away, with or without glasses.

Once the iris information was set up on the device, verification took less than a second.

Delta ID CEO Salil Prabhakar demonstrated Delta ID’s ActiveIRIS technology in an Intel device at the 2014 Intel Developer Forum. In the demonstration, Prabhakar demonstrated how ActiveIRIS can unlock someone’s phone in less than 150 milliseconds. But, with the unique complexity of the eye, Delta ID has plans to take iris authentication further than a novelty alternative to your phone’s lock screen. According to the company’s press release, ActiveIRIS also works to help users make online payments and log into bank accounts.

Delta ID is aiming to include iris authentication into the wave of biometric security options such as Apple’s Touch ID and Android’s Face Unlock feature. In the same vein, mobile device maker ZTE announced at MWC its new ZTE Grand S3 will use EyeVerify, a security software that reads the veins in a person’s eye.

Delta ID’s ActiveIRIS software is available for all phone and laptop operating systems, and the company has partnered with Japanese tech company Fujitsu to develop a prototype phone integrated with ActiveIRIS. Fujitsu revealed the prototype at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain. We saw the tech in action, and it worked remarkably fast in demos with three different people, some with glasses, and some without. Once the iris information was set up on the device, verification took less than a second.

No release date for the phone has been announced, but reports have surfaced that Fufitsu plans to make ActiveIRIS an enterprise security solution for businesses. However, we expect to see it reach phones sooner rather than later, as manufacturers race to create phones that are even more secure. In the near future, the next time you forget your password, all you’ll have to do is just look in the mirror.

Andy Boxall
Andy is a Senior Writer at Digital Trends, where he concentrates on mobile technology, a subject he has written about for…
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