Juniper: Facial recognition will be a feature of 800m smartphones by 2024

New research from Juniper finds that facial recognition hardware, such as Face ID on recent iPhones, will be the fastest growing form of smartphone biometric hardware, reaching over 800 million handsets in 2024, compared to an estimated 96 million in 2019.

However the majority of smartphone facial recognition will be software-based, with over 1.3 billion devices having that capability by 2024. This is made possible by advances in AI, with companies like iProov and Mastercard offering facial recognition authentication that is strong enough to be used for payment and other high-end authentication tasks.

Fingerprint commerce – touch-and-go

The research also found that despite the ubiquity of selfie cameras, fingerprint hardware will remain a dominant element in biometric payments, as sensors expand to emerging markets. Juniper anticipates over 4.6 billion smartphones worldwide will have fingerprint sensors installed by 2024, although their usage for payment will be significantly lower than this.

This expansion of biometric capabilities will bring the technology to more eCommerce platforms, as retailers seek to meet enhanced security requirements. Originally envisioned for contactless payment use, Juniper expects over 60% of biometrically-authenticated payments in 2024 to be for authorising remote payments.

As the longest running biometric method, fingerprint payments will take the lead in this market as standards coalesce around the technology more easily than for facial recognition payments.

Many consumers are now used to making fingerprint-based biometric payments, both for contactless and remote payments. That familiarity and continued inclusion in smartphones will make it hard to displace in many markets.

Juniper research author, James Moar