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Biometric IoT monetisation opportunities suffer from strategic misalignment - report

Strategic misalignment is the prevalent threat keeping innovative biometric monetisation from reaching critical mass in the larger IoT ecosystem, according to a new report from ABI Research. 

As IoT connections will reach 23.7 billion by 2026, biometric players face significant opposition penetrating the multifaceted and use-case specific IoT environment. However, pervasive connectivity and digitisation requirements and increased intelligence demands will help the biometrics market push forward in more IoT applications, the company says.

"Talking about the IoT in its entirety makes little sense for most biometric vendors and, in turn, discussing biometric authentication makes little sense for most IoT players; naturally, novel biometric monetszation models have faced significant difficulties in demonstrating an ROI-first approach," says Dimitrios Pavlakis, security analyst at ABI Research.

According to the report, titled IoT transformative horizons, some of the leading causes of this strategic misalignment include: a lack of IT security investments in the IoT ecosystem, difficulties demonstrating monetisation opportunities for biometric and security service providers, complications faced by biometric vendors to break the hardware-based revenue model, and resistance for a BaaS (biometrics-as-a-service) are some of the leading causes of this strategic misalignment.

"Biometric service providers do not need to re-invent the wheel to get a bigger slice of the IoT pie, but they also must not cling to traditional, inflexible models," Pavlakis says.

"They must prove to IoT players that biometrics can offer intelligent solutions for targeted applications, demonstrate the ease of device deployment, system integration and interoperability with centralised platforms, and showcase pricing model modularity and versatility."

The report covers prevalent monetisation opportunities across the entire IoT ecosystem, not only including current and established markets like enterprise and IT, government and civil, border control and law enforcement, but also emerging markets like connected vehicles, retail, smart home, robotics, public events, vending, casinos, and entertainment.

"Biometric players need to look past standard user authentication service offerings to penetrate the highly complex and multifaceted IoT ecosystem," says Pavlakis. 

"They should not look into IoT applications to solve problems that do not exist, but rather to add intelligence that IoT players did not know they could use. "            

The findings are from ABI Research's Biometrics in the IoT transformative horizons report. The report is part of the company's Digital Security research service, which includes research, data, and ABI Insights. Transformative Horizon PowerPoints are aimed at providing timely, deep, actionable insight in the looming transformative innovations that will impact the markets which matter most by focusing on a new company entrance or product launch, a significant company merger, a new business model or a new strategic direction for an incumbent.