Amazon reportedly testing hand-scanning payment system

Amazon reportedly testing hand-scanning payment system

Amazon's new system can apparently process a payment in less than 300 milliseconds, which is stupendously fast.

Forget the titanium Apple Card - Amazon's latest payment method uses flesh and blood.

Unlike most other biometric identification systems that require users to physically touch something, such as a fingerprint reader, Amazon's system doesn't require any physical contact with a surface. The company intends to roll out the payment technology at its Whole Foods supermarket chain starting next year.

The Post reports that Amazon is testing the project, codenamed Orville, in vending machines at its NY offices, where the company has installed hand scanners. Instead, it uses vision and depth geometry to scan the hands of shoppers with Amazon Prime accounts and then charge the purchases to their credit card information already on file, the newspaper reported.

Orville is now accurate to within one ten-thousandth of 1 percent, but sources say Amazon engineers want to improve it to a millionth of 1 percent before its launch. The speed of rollout, however, could be affected by how long it takes to get the new systems installed and to train employees at stores. "You only have to walk into Whole Foods to see the massive lines of people waiting to check out".

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"People tend to spend more when they don't have the experience of touching something tangible like money", Maksad said.

At Amazon's budding chain of "Go" convenience stores that launched previous year, customers use a phone app to check in at a turnstile.

Further, you don't even need to have your phone with you when you shop.

The end game, however, is to successfully transition the tech from vending machines to the registers in a Whole Foods store. She warns, however, that it might not be wise to give a company your biometric data and risk being a data theft victim, especially now that there are "a couple of nation states that are really good at stealing data".

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