NXP Semiconductors, AuthenTec and DeviceFidelity announced that they are jointly developing reference designs that enable highly secure mobile payments via Android-based phones through the use of fingerprint biometrics and near field communication (NFC) technology.
Reference designs created by the companies are expected to help mobile phone OEMs and wireless carriers address the growing demand for NFC-capable smart phones, which are forecast to grow to nearly 300 million units worldwide by 2014 according to Juniper Research.
The companies also recently collaborated to complete the first biometrically-enabled NFC mobile payment transaction in the U.S.
The successful transaction was made possible via a Motorola ATRIX 4G smartphone equipped with AuthenTec’s AES1750 smart fingerprint sensor and DeviceFidelity’s In2Pay microSD card based on NXP’s secure NFC solution.
The secure mobile payment was conducted when the demonstrator swiped a finger over the smartphone’s fingerprint sensor, authenticating him as the pre-enrolled account owner and quickly launching a credit card app. Following authentication the user simply tapped the ATRIX smartphone against a payment terminal to complete the first fingerprint-enabled, secure NFC transaction in the U.S.
The companies plan to collaborate further on additional, similar NFC-based designs to help enable broad proliferation of mobile wallets in the U.S. and other regions, and they are committed to developing secure and easy to use mobile commerce subsystems to help ease design integration for mobile phone OEMs.