MeReal bills new multi-application biometric smart card as world’s most versatile

MeReal Biometrics has launched a new version of its biometric smart card, which the company says is the most agile and versatile card on the market, and is compatible with more payment and access devices than any fingerprint card on the market today.

The new “Keyper” is Java Card compatible, meaning existing smart cards in the market can upgrade to a fingerprint card by transferring their applications to the Keyper without a time-consuming or costly redesign. Programs running payment wallets, credit cards, cryptocurrency vaults and public key infrastructure handling digital certificates and encryption can all be relocated to the Keyper in accordance with global platform guidelines, according to the announcement. Fingerprint enrollment does not require another device, and the card can be set to require fingerprint authorization for certain kinds of transactions and not for others.

In addition to contact and contactless technology, Keyper can communicate with sound waves, and the audio feature follows a China UnionPay payment standard. Enhanced contact functionality makes it compatible with all PC and smart card readers. Keyper also features a new secure element, a tamper resistant chip which validates user identity and information safely and confidentially.

As with MeReal’s previous cards, the Keyper is powered by a built-in battery, which must be charged once per quarter. Improved power consumption has cut the charging time from two hours to one and a half.

MeReal has also joined the FIDO Alliance, and the Keyper complies with FIDO standards, as well as PKI standard X.509, ISO 7816, and regulations such as PSD2.

“The Keyper places MeReal Biometrics in a league of its own,” says MeReal CEO Philippe Blot. “There truly is no other payment or access card, let alone a fingerprint protected card, that can be used whenever and wherever you need it in every industry.”

Blot told Biometric Update earlier this year that there are many possible ways for the biometric payment card market to evolve beyond reader-dependent mono-application NFC cards.

The first ever biometric card issued by a UK bank went into circulation in April.

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