I’m not sure whether it’s because advertising for the Galaxy Note 7 has raised the profile of iris scanners, or because seeing the technology in action in real life is a compelling demonstration that the future has arrived today, but right now the iris scanner on my Lumia 950 is the hottest thing in technology.
Everyone who sees it in action wants to have a go (despite me explaining that they won’t be able to log in with it) and then everyone wants to see me unlock the phone again once they’ve failed just to see the magic happen.
Now I can guarantee you that even at its best unlock time is longer than a fingerprint scanner, but reliability is amazing. In all kinds of ight, with glasses or without, unlock works. I’m not sure if that’s because I have run the recognition training feature a couple of extra times or because Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary Update has improved the algorithms behind the recognition.
Whatever the case, I’ve quickly come to appreciate the iris scanner as the ideal security tool. It can’t be fooled by fingerprints lifted from surfaces and it works when your fingers are damps or hidden in gloves.
With the HP Elite x3 and Galaxy Note 7 both rocking iris scanners and fingerprint sensors it will be interesting to see which method is preferred by users in the real world. I’m betting on iris scanners, whatever the performance differences might be.