Microsoft’s technological developments for their products are expected to include a ‘human’ element in the near future, with the Windows 8.1 update set to feature ‘biometric’ security measures.
The Verge reports that the latest update for Windows 8 (and also the first major one since its release last October) will include an ability to ‘lock folders’ through the user’s fingerprints. This is the first time that such an option will be available directly through the system, as opposed to formerly requiring 3rd-party external technology to implement a similar measure.
It is believed that the fingerprint method will be tied in with the ‘Microsoft Account’ of the user in question, and offering the chance to make online store purchases or app log-in through the theoretically simplest of means, and bringing the market one step closer to the ‘connected future’ so often depicted in movies.
The technology is rumoured to be planned for a widespread range of Microsoft devices in the future, with the company planning to one day have tablet computers, laptops, and PC mice and keyboards all covered by some form of biometric-scanning ability.
Microsoft’s Stephen Rose noted of the current plans for fingerprint reading: “You’ll begin to see these be more pervasively available just to make it that much easier to log in to Windows.”
The company noted of the importance of ‘touching’ the technology during their v8.1 announcement blog post: “We built Windows 8 for a world where touch is a first class interaction model, the same as mouse and keyboard; and where there’s a proliferation of innovative and diverse devices that are highly mobile, always on the go and always connected. Windows 8 was built on the reality that the lines between our work and personal lives have blurred.”
With proposals to utilise the technology into official apps of a number of external manufacturers, will the unusual but almost fail-safe approach to secure log-in be a successful move for Windows products, or will the often-predicted ‘consequence’ of the utopian biometric ideal leave Microsoft having a lot of finger blood on their hands?