NTT DoCoMo launches smartphone with iris unlock feature

Developed by Fujitsu, the iris scanner can also be used to authorize mobile payments

NTT DoCoMo's Arrows NX F-04G, unveiled Wednesday in Tokyo, is being billed as the first commercialized smartphone with iris authentication technology, which can also be used to authorize mobile payments.

NTT DoCoMo's Arrows NX F-04G, unveiled Wednesday in Tokyo, is being billed as the first commercialized smartphone with iris authentication technology, which can also be used to authorize mobile payments.

Japanese mobile carrier NTT DoCoMo has released a smartphone that can be unlocked with a mere glance.

The Arrows NX F-04G, unveiled Wednesday in Tokyo, is billed as the first commercialized smartphone with iris authentication technology, which can also be used to authorize mobile payments.

Iris scanners make it easier to unlock phones than keying in a PIN, which can be forgotten or stolen. Authentication takes a second or two, a bit slower than fingerprint authentication, and is based on patterns in the iris that are unique to each individual.

The device works with authentication specifications set by the FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) Alliance, which is supported by Microsoft, Google, PayPal and others.

DoCoMo's phone is made by Fujitsu and based on a prototype iris scanner that was demonstrated at Mobile World Congress in March.

While the prototype phone had a slightly bulky attachment at the top of the handset, the F-04G looks like many other slim Android phones, with a 5.2-inch WQHD display and weighing 155 grams. It also has a 21.5-megapixel main camera and 2.4-megapixel secondary camera, NFC capability and a 3,120 mAh battery. It's capable of 225Mbps downloads.

Users must first register their iris pattern by staring into two animated circles in an app. The pattern is stored in the phone itself. To unlock it, users can hold the phone up and look at it, as if browsing a webpage, and it will authenticate them. Authorizing mobile payments is also done with a quick glance at the animated circles.

The Fujitsu prototype incorporated a high-speed, high-accuracy iris recognition algorithm developed by California-based Delta ID. Fujitsu said the error rate for the prototype is about one in 100,000.

Available in green, black and white, the Arrows NX F-04G is slated to be released at the end of this month in Japan for around ¥55,000 (US$460). There are no plans to sell it outside Japan.

Tim Hornyak covers Japan and emerging technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Tim on Twitter at @robotopia.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags NTT DoCoMoconsumer electronicsFujitsu Laboratoriese-commercesmartphonesAndroidFujitsuinternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tim Hornyak

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?