Fingerprint scanners have been available for laptops for quite some time now, but they are relatively unreliable and often difficult to use. Some of the older Toshibas from 10 years ago had fingerprint scanners built into the touchpad, but you had to swipe your fingers to use them, not hold them in place like you would for an iPhone or a tablet. If the new technology from Synaptics proves to be a success though, many of the laptops in the future might be getting high-tech fingerprint scanners built into their trackpads.
These new touchpads, known as SecurePads, are designed with a fingerprint senor in the upper left corner. The sensor works much like one you might see on the iPad Mini 3 or the Samsung Galaxy S5. Simply press your pointer finger in the right spot on the pad, and the computer scans it as an identifying mark. This can be used to get into your computer, pay for items online, verify administrative steps, and more.
Synaptics is a member of the FIDO Alliance, which protects against identity theft online. The alliance includes a number of other big companies in the tech world, including Dell, Lenovo, Netflix, Google, and Microsoft. The alliance recently released version 1.0 of their fingerprint-authentication standards, which paves the way for more companies to implement fingerprint scanners on their devices. This puts Synaptics at the forefront of what could be a new movement in computer technology.
Fingerprint scanners may not be a commonplace now in laptops, but they could be the staple of logging in and shopping in the future. Providing this technology allows for better security on computers, preventing people from stealing a simple password to get in. Keep an eye out for the latest models of laptops to hit the market, and you may soon see a SecurePad under the keyboard.