is looking into allowing shoppers to pay with a selfie. The online retailer has
filed a patent application for the technology, saying it is more secure and
less "awkward" than traditional passwords.
would be able to take a picture or a short video of themselves to authenticate
payments, instead of typing in a password.
facial recognition system would ensure it's the actual customer -- and not
hackers, thieves or kids using their parents' devices -- who is making the
process would replace passwords in the same way a thumbprint replaces putting
in a PIN code on an iPhone and other devices.
double check that the image is a legitimate selfie of a living human being
(instead of a scan of previously taken photo), the system would also require
users to blink, smile or tilt their head when taking their picture.
(MA) has recently launched selfie and finger print payments based on similar
principle. Also, Windows 10 allows people to log into their PCs with a facial
said it is exploring the new technology to improve security and user experience.
"The entry of these passwords on portable devices is
not user friendly in many cases, as the small touchscreen or keyboard elements
can be difficult to accurately select using a relatively large human
finger," the company said in the filing.
"(It) can require the user to turn away from friends
or co-workers when entering a password, which can be awkward or embarrassing in
many situations," Amazon added.
filing didn't consider if taking a selfie while blinking, tilting head and
smiling would be considered less awkward and embarrassing than typing in a
did not say when, if ever, would the new technology be available.