Fingerprint authentication likely coming to Chrome OS and new Chromebooks

A code commit indicates the Chrome operating system is adding native support for fingerprint biometrics, and that fingerprint sensors are coming to Chromebooks, possibly as an opt-in option for both device unlocking and approving purchases Chrome Unboxed reports.

The commit refers to the OOBE, the device startup process the user goes through to first set up the device or after a complete reset, known as the “out of box experience,” according to the report.

At the moment, the function would enable users to enroll up to three fingers, on a sensor referred to as being located in the top left of the device. A line of text within the commit identifies an icon which would be used to prompt fingerprint verification “for identification or to approve purchases.”

Chrome Unboxed speculates that the feature could become available on next generation Pixelbooks beginning with a launch expected in or around October.

Reports suggest that Chrome has been working on adding fingerprint unlocking as a native feature of Chrome OS and Chromebooks for more than a year and a half. Another code commit was recently noticed which may also add device unlocking with facial biometrics to an upcoming Chrome OS release.

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