Idesia uses an electrical signal generated by the heartbeat to create an “electro biodynamic signature” unique to every individual, establishing a biometric identity that cannot be forged. The product only requires contact between the finger of the person being checked and a small metal sensor, and it therefore can be used at airports and border crossings as well as to access personal electronic equipment.
Fingerprint readers and face recognition have been used for some time to recognize users, but there are concerns that those technologies can be easily tricked, said Nathan Brookwood, principal analyst at Insight 64.
Monitoring heart beats could provide Intel a more advanced and secure way to recognize users, Brookwood said.
“Intel is very worried about security. That’s one of their major thrusts,” Brookwood said. “If Idesia has something unique, then Intel could possibly create a relatively easy sensor that could go into a smartphone or tablet that could monitor the heartbeat.”
It is highly unlikely that the technology acquired from Idesia would go into the next microprocessor, Brookwood said.
Intel has a big interest in the health care industry and is in a joint venture with General Electric to provide in-home heath care products. The joint venture, called Care Innovations, provides products like tablets targeted at the health care industry. Intel is also conducting research on health care for senior citizens.