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Oki Electric Industry Co Ltd of Japan has succeeded in developing Iris recognition technology for mobile terminals such as mobile phones and PDAs. The technology is based on the company's original iris recognition algorithm using standard optical cameras that are equipped in mobile phones. The company plans to commercialize this product worldwide starting March 2007.

As mobile terminals become more sophisticated, new services such as payments by mobile phone and enterprise information management are becoming commonly used. Users and equipment manufacturers have been drawing attention to the incorporation of personal authentication in such equipment to prevent misuse when the terminals are lost or stolen. While biometric authentication has attracted users and manufacturers, iris recognition is an authentication technology using the iris pattern in the eye. This iris pattern is complex and random, which makes it difficult to find a recognizable rule. Thus, it provides authentication with high accuracy.

The company has been providing its iris recognition technology-based equipment to government agencies, financial institutions and other enterprises in Japan and overseas. While these devices require a dedicated infrared camera, the new Iris recognition technology for mobile terminals can use a standard camera that is embedded in a mobile terminal, because of the original algorithm the company has developed. This technology is embodied in a compact program for easy embedding, so it can authenticate the iris in a sufficient speed even when using the limited processing capacity of a mobile terminal. Thus it contributes to enabling smaller iris recognition equipment.