Cash, cheques, plastic, Paypal – there are already many ways to pay. And now a group of students at Lund University in Sweden have come up with a biometric payment system.
It works by touching the screen with your palm and entering the final four digits of your smartphone number.
The idea is called Quixter, and is the brainchild of Fredrik Leifland, an engineering student, who wanted to make paying faster and more secure.
He explained: “I had the idea when I was queuing in a supermarket. I realised that the most time-consuming part of the whole purchase was paying and I thought there must be a faster way to do this. And that was the start of Quixter.”
An infrared scanner recognises the unique vein structure in each person’s hand to identify them. The technology in itself is not new; in Japan it has been used for many years to access medical records and the system is now widely used to identify people. But Quixter claims it is the first company to use the technology in a payment system.
One early adopter was enthusiatic: “It is really convenient and you don’t have to carry cash with you all the time. Here on campus there are hardly any cash points so it’s great to be able to pay with your palm – and it’s very quick.”
According to Leifland, the system is more secure than using fingerprints, and avoids the problem of card cloning.