Mastercard introduces a credit card with a built-in fingerprint reader

Mastercard has rolled out a credit card that has an integrated fingerprint scanner, making it easier to authenticate purchases at retail stores. The card stores two fingerprints, and features an embedded sensor that lets you authorize payments instead of having to sign or use a PIN.

To get started, you'll have to register your fingerprints at your bank, after which the information will be converted to a "encrypted digital template" that will be stored on the card. Mastercard's biometric cards are just as thin as existing credit cards, and will work with current chip-and-PIN readers. You'll be able to authenticate purchases by placing your finger on the integrated biometric sensor, and the cards don't have require any batteries as they source power from the payment terminals.

Mastercard is trialling the cards in South Africa right now, and has mentioned that additional trials will be conducted in the Asia Pacific region and select markets in Europe in the coming months. A wide rollout is slated for the end of the year, although customers in the U.S. will have to wait until early 2018 to get their fingers on the biometric card.

Harish Jonnalagadda
Senior Editor - Asia

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.