EFFECTIVE SOLUTIONS FOR DIFFERENT APPLICATIONS
Fingerprints offers a strong product portfolio of biometric system solutions that help create easier and more secure everyday lives for the users. Simultaneously, solutions are being developed in new emerging markets for biometric solutions.
Fingerprints’ solutions are suitable for multiple product segments. Apart from smartphones, which is currently the largest application segment for the company’s products, Fingerprints’ solutions are also found in such applications as smartcards, door locks, vehicles and the IoT. The company’s products and solutions are protected by extensive patents. We always endeavor to obtain a balanced and growing patent portfolio extending from algorithms and biometric image processing to sensors and hardware packaging technology.
Fewer and more efficient capacitive sensors for broad applications Historically, most of Fingerprints’ revenues have been generated from solutions for fingerprint verification for the mobile sector.
In 2018, the product portfolio in the smartphone segment was concentrated to fewer capacitive sensors that combine lower production costs with high-quality performance to meet the demand for more uniform solutions for the various smartphone segments. The sensors can be placed on the front, back or side of the unit with a color and material-adapted coating.
Capacitive fingerprint sensors
Fingerprints was a pioneer in capacitive fingerprint sensors, and was the first company in the world to integrate a touch fingerprint sensor into an Android phone in 2014. The market then expanded extremely rapidly and Fingerprints succeeded in building a dominant position. Over the subsequent years, the competition intensified and the industry developed into a mature mass market. However, by continuously developing and refining the product portfolio, Fingerprints succeeded in maintaining a leading position with a market share exceeding one third in 2019.
This strong position is based on renowned high product quality, security and biometric performance. Capacitive fingerprint sensors for mobile phones accounted for some 90 percent of sales in 2019, and Fingerprints consolidated its leading position during the year by further strengthening its product portfolio. We launched the FPC1520, a new sensor generation that builds further on our already successful product, the FPC1511. This new sensor generation has the potential to further increase the company’s addressable market by making the inclusion of fingerprint sensors possible in even the simplest of smartphone models. The FPC1540, a thin sensor designed for side mounting, was launched in the market in 2019. This product meets the customers’ demands for solutions that function well with the most recent models, such as foldable devices and mobiles with borderless fronts.
We will continue to focus on consolidating our leading position in capacitive sensors by ensuring that we have a comprehensive, competitive product portfolio for all relevant segments.
For many years, the capacitive fingerprint sensor dominated the market for biometric solutions for smartphones. Under-display solutions, also referred to as in-display, are an alternative for integrating fingerprint sensors into a smartphone’s display. Since the market for under-display sensors is growing rapidly, Fingerprints aims to also secure a position in this market.
Since Apple launched iPhone X featuring facial recognition a couple of years ago, interest in touchless technologies has increased, even though fingerprint recognition still dominates the market for Android devices. In October 2019, Fingerprints launched Touchless 2.0, a platform that combines the user-friendliness of facial recognition with the high security level of iris recognition. Touchless 2.0 offers a more secure and more cost-effective alternative to advanced facial recognition, not only for smartphones but also for a range of applications in various industries.
T-Shape™ is a capacitive sensor module developed by Fingerprints for optimizing integration in smartcards according to the
relevant industry standard and ISO requirements. The module is adapted for efficient mass production and works for both contact and contactless cards. T-Shape™ is the market’s most power efficient module, with very good contactless charging characteristics, which is the fundamental criterion for functional biometric contactless cards. In 2019, Fingerprints continued to strengthen its position as the leading supplier of biometric solutions for smartcards.
In February 2019, Fingerprints secured the world’s first volume order for fingerprint sensors for dual interface biometric payment cards from Gemalto (Thales). This agreement also included licensing of Fingerprints’ biometric software platform for payments, the FPC-BEP, which was launched in 2019.
Fingerprints is uniquely positioned in biometrics for payments, perhaps best illustrated by the fact that our technology is being used in all publicly announced market trials to date of contactless biometric payment and credit cards around the world. At the end of the year, Cornèrcard announced the world’s first limited commercial launch of biometric credit cards. The card is supplied by Thales and contains Fingerprints’ T-Shape sensor and the FPC-BEP.
Fingerprints solutions are also used in a wide range of products outside the mobile industry and payment area. Example of applications include door locks, access control systems, home electronics and vehicles. Solutions comprise complete modules for both fingerprint recognition and Touchless 2.0.
In 2019, Fingerprints secured the first volume order of T-Shape for use outside the payment area. The sensor will be integrated into a card used for secure online access and secure data storage offline.
The automotive industry is another interesting application area with considerable potential. Since 2018, Fingerprints has an exclusive partnership agreement with Gentex, a leading automotive industry technology vendor, to jointly develop biometric systems capable of authenticating drivers using iris scanning. Once verified, the car can start and relevant parts of the passenger compartment are adapted automatically, such as mirrors, steering wheel settings, seat positions and satnav systems.
In November 2019, FPC BM-Lite was launched, a free-standing biometric system developed with the aim of enabling rapid integration into a range of devices and applications, such as door locks, padlocks, crypto wallets and authentication tokens.