Can mobile devices with iris scanning tech tackle Aadhaar authentication failures?

Delta ID, a firm working to bring secure biometric authentication believes that iris integrated solutions can better address the Aadhaar authentication

By Rohit

If Delta ID Inc., a firm working to bring secure biometric authentication is to be believed, 'Iris scanning' technology can be the next step in Aadhaar authentication process?

Iris scanning technology could address Aadhaar authentication


The California based firm recently cited the high failure rates in Aadhaar biometric authentication, as recently reported in MGNREGA tests in Telangana. As per Delta ID, the high failure rate can be addressed in a cost-effective way with the iris integrated mobile devices.

"We believe iris integrated smartphones and tablets will address the issues reported with Aadhaar biometric authentication," said Dr. Salil Prabhakar, President and CEO of Delta ID Inc., "The UIDAI and the worldwide biometric community have tested and found iris to have better reliability. We are confident the failure rates will be drastically lower once the cheaper iris integrated mobile devices are adopted in the market."

Iris scanning technology could address Aadhaar authentication

However, the question arises whether the same security feature can be implemented in low cost smartphones? We believe it is possible as fingerprint scanners, once a feature restricted to high-end mobile devices is now available in handsets selling under Rs. 10,000. So the same can be done in the next one or two years with the iris scanning technology.

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As of now, the key impediments in wide-scale roll out of iris for Aadhaar has been the high cost of iris devices. The firm says the problem is being addressed with the rollout of iris integrated mobile devices. Samsung partnered with Delta ID to launch India's first iris integrated tablet in May 2016.


The technology is arriving in smartphones too, for instance, the LG G6 is soon expected to get the face recognition technology and Samsung Galaxy S8 is all set to deliver on the same security aspect.

Besides, with the government mandating the use of Aadhaar biometric authentication in more social and other programs, the need for a biometric modality that works reliably is critical.

Unlike fingerprints that are being reported to show high failure rates due to wear and tear, the iris, being a protected internal organ, is expected to be significantly more reliable. Additionally, since the iris is not affected with age, it works reliably across all age groups.

Now the only thing that is left unanswered is the fact that how soon we can see the implementation of such sophisticated technology in our government process. Yes it might take a while but the future prospects of iris scanning tech in such processes with the help of mobile devices is real and not very far.

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