Tech Giant, Amazon has launched a new payment system for physical stores that scans the vein patterns of the human palm.
The Amazon one Scanner registers an image of the user’s palm and lets them pay for goods and services by hovering their hand in the mid-air above the scanner. The palm based identification is based on capturing the vein patterns of the palm.
Amazon has said it will test-run the new payment systems in two of its physical stores in Seattle while active discussions are ongoing with potential customers about rolling out the new product on a large scale.
Amazon said it hopes the new payment system would become an alternate payment or loyalty card option standing side by side with traditional payment systems.
The Amazon One is based on the Palm identification technology which has been around for a while. It makes it difficult for forgery to happen because the patterns under each human finger is different for each person and finger. They are also hidden deep between the skin’s surfaces.
While the technology is also similar to the fingerprint scan, it has the advantage of more distance and much more practical.
Amazon has said the system will work with custom-built algorithms and hardware capable of scanning mire distinct features on and below the hand surface.
The Tech Giant reiterated that the new technology was more private than other methods of recognition, in reference to civil suits which forced it to pull down its facial recognition software. Critics at the time had stated that the facial recognition software developed by the Tech Company was racially bias.
The Company said it felt a contactless system of payment will appeal more to its customers especially during the period of a health crises.
There has been some criticism of the new technology however, with privacy group, Big Brother Watch saying Amazon was filling the market with invasive, dystopian technologies that solve non-existent problems.
According to its director, Silkie Carlo,
“No one should have to provide biometric data in order to buy goods or services. Amazon’s attempt to normalise biometric payment and home surveillance devices risks building a world in which we’re more easily tracked and recorded, which will inevitably disempower citizens.”