PixelPin wants you to ditch long passwords for pictures instead
A new service aims to change the need to remember lengthy and complicated passwords by letting you opt for pinpoints on an image instead.
Called PixelPin, the new service hopes to convince businesses that image recognition is easier and simpler than typing words into a box.
It's all based on something called Pictorial Superiority Effect (PSE) and the idea is that you create an account, upload a picture, and then choose three or more points on the image that act as a password to your data.
Although the system hasn't as yet been implemented on any website, that hasn't stopped the company getting excited aboiut the possibilities it could offer and the hassles it could solve, especially on mobile devices with small screens.
Demoing the product to Pocket-lint, Brian Taylor, the founder and CEO of the company, walked us through the very simple process. Choosing the wrong point or area means access is denied.
Those worried that you'll need pinpoint accuracy, shouldn't be. According to Taylor, the software is clever enough to know what the screen size is and adjust the size of the point accordingly, so there is some room for error, but not enough that if you don't know where the pin is you can gain access.
When we asked whether people simply just pinpointed faces or round objects in the picture, Taylor said no, adding that it was surprising that once people understood the importance of the pin, the location on the images became very abstract.
With more and more of us accessing data on the go, the idea of picture passwords is something we will have to get used to, and PixelPin is just one of many looking into letting us ditch passwords for passimages.
Microsoft in 2011 patented the idea of unlocking data on your phone by sketching strokes on a picture either by pinpointing someone's face, or drawing a circle around another.
Apple is also looking at picture passwords. It has just received a patent for unlocking a device by asking users to identify one or more people or objects in images taken with the phone and stored in its photo library.
PixelPin's system is very different, but it shows us that having to remember long and unwieldy passwords with multiple characters sets and upper and lowercase letters could soon be a thing of the past.