FIDO Alliance: Android devices with fingerprint sensors coming in 2014
Android devices will soon have fingerprint-scanning capabilities.
Speaking to USA Today, Michael Barrett, the president of FIDO Alliance, hinted that consumers in six months will be able to buy the latest Android handsets equipped with a FIDO-based biometric sensor. The sensor, much like Touch ID found in Apple's iPhone 5S, will let users swipe their fingerprints to access online accounts.
"The initial FIDO-equipped Android devices, along with an array of commercial services using the FIDO protocols, are on track to roll out in early 2014," said Barrett.
Barrett didn't specify which companies would launch FIDO-equipped Android devices in 2014, though they'll likely be members of FIDO. FIDO is a non-profit organization attempting to address the lack of interoperability among strong authentication devices as well as the issues users face with creating and remembering multiple usernames and passwords. A couple of the more prominent FIDO members include Lenovo and LG.
Interestingly, while Barrett was mum on naming the Android device manufacturers currently embracing FIDO, he did mention Apple as a potential candidate: "Our view is that it's possible Apple might choose to start using FIDO, but that's probably a couple of years out," he said.
Although Apple notoriously loves to stay in-house when developing products and has difficulty embracing any third-party contributions, a wishful-thinking Barrett seemed to think that the company might one day adapt Touch ID to FIDO. Hey - can't fault a guy for hoping, right?