Toronto Star: Finger on the future

Tyler Hamilton reports on HP’s new iPAQ 5450 which includes a biometric fingerprint scanner.

Experts say HP’s decision to integrate biometric technology into a hand-held is an industry milestone and a sure sign of things to come as device makers draw up plans for next-generation products that blend tight security with one-swipe convenience.

“The credibility you get from going into a consumer product like this is really high,” said Michael Thieme, director of special projects for International Biometrics Group LLC, a New York-based consultancy that focuses on the biometric market. I think it’s reflective of what we’re going to start seeing over the next 18 to 24 months.”

For biometric software and hardware developers, it’s been a long time coming. Biometrics ˜ a way of identifying people through a fingerprint, iris pattern or some other unique biological characteristic ˜ has for years been touted as a perfect fit for consumer electronic devices, keyboards and that mouse beside your home computer.

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