Biometrics refers to the technology utilized through measurement of physiological and behavioral characteristics used to identify computer users. Such physiological characteristics commonly include the face, fingerprints, and DNA. Behavioral characteristics commonly include the user’s digital signature, his or her voiceprint, and walk.
In the previous decade, the market for biometrics was about USD 100 million. Further, the prospect for biometrics market rose because of several powerful and developed countries beginning to use anti-terrorist mechanisms to combat events such as various terrorist attacks and infiltrations. Also, biometric devices are often used for authentication before allowing access to a computer system.
Biometrics is gradually gaining ground and pushing out conventional methods of identification and security checking like being physically frisked, photo IDs, tokens and passwords. This emerging technology is growing at a fast rate as it is being rapidly adopted not only in the private sector but in various government projects as well. The size of the biometric readers market was USD 50.2 million in 2011, and is further expected to grow at 48 percent CAGR to touch USD 363 million by 2018.
The market for Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) and other fingerprint biometric technologies account for the largest share of the global biometrics market and is expected to retain its dominance in the market in the coming future. This sector is valued at USD 2.8 billion in 2010 and is expected to increase at a CAGR of 19.6% to reach nearly USD 6.6 billion by 2015.
The facial structure, the iris, veins, and voice recognition together constitute the second largest segment. This sector is worth an estimated $1.4 billion in 2010 and is expected to reach $3.5 billion in 2015, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.9%.
Government and businesses are increasingly adopting biometric technologies to realize safety frameworks. With the recent spate of terrorist attacks worldwide, security is a major concern for the entire global community. Reduced cost of basic biometric devices and equipments like, fingerprint recognition devices etc have increased the usage of biometrics in educational institutions and offices. The purchasing power of the public in general has increased. They wish to safeguard their valuable property. This has helped the biometric technology market explore newer markets worldwide.
The underdeveloped nations lack both awareness and the capital requirement to tap this technology. Thus though they intensely need this technology they are not in a position to purchase it owing to their high cost. Domestic usage of biometrics can be viewed as a whole new opportunity in the biometrics market. With increased number of wealthy people worldwide and especially in the developed nations, retail sale of biometrics in such nations shows a huge growth potential.
Communication Intelligence Corporation (CIC), Cyber-SIGN, EyeTicket, Interlink Electronics, IrScan, Identix, International Digital Holding / TrueTouch, Technologies, Litronic Litronic, Motorola, Veridicom, VeriSign, Visionics Corporation are some of the major market players in this sector.