The biggest biometric access control customers include health care and government. Because of the pandemic, many prefer facial recognition.
The biometric access control market has grown significantly over recent years. According to MarketsandMarkets, it may extend from US$ 8.6 billion in 2020 to $12.8 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 8.2 percent, globally. COVID-19 is definitely the main driver that would kickstart this growth, followed by improved technology and easier access and affordability of solutions.
Some verticals and industries are more interested than others in biometric access control solutions. Naturally, facial recognition is becoming the most preferred biometric modality in many of these industries as customers look for touchless solutions without compromising security or cost. In this article, we explore the different sectors that are rapidly adopting biometric access control solutions.
The healthcare sector has always had to give immense importance to hygienic solutions. Even before COVID-19 became an issue, limiting contact and maintaining social distance has been a part of hospital protocols
. With COVID-19, these measures have reached an even higher level.
"We're seeing demand for health and hygiene-related biometrics solutions grow in public and multi-purpose facilities as people resume day-to-day life with the unresolved COVID-19 health threat," said Young Moon, CEO of Suprema. "These solutions include thermal cameras and face recognition terminals with mask detection features designed to screen out not only unauthorized entrants but also people with potential health issues. In software, features like remote user enrollment that reduces contact and helps stop the spread of infectious diseases are also sought after."
The federal government is yet another vertical that is actively purchasing biometric solutions. Steven Humphreys, CEO of Identiv, pointed out that three factors drive growth in this vertical. They have high-security needs, especially in military bases and critical infrastructure, and biometrics can provide this.
The second reason is that the technology has become ubiquitous. It's essential for the federal government that there are multiple vendors available and not proprietary technology.
"As the pandemic continues, the government is trying to make sure their facilities are available to people at all times," Humphreys continued. "Especially as we, hopefully, get through the next wave and then open back up, the government should have a touchless environment in place so they can provide their people access. One of the agencies particularly interested in facial recognition is the IRS as the US comes into the tax season soon. The IRS has to make their offices accessible but also secure."
The report from MarketsandMarkets suggests that more businesses from commercial sectors like banking and retail
are also expected to adopt touchless biometric access control solutions in the future. For the banking and financial industry, security is paramount because of the nature of the assets they hold. Biometrics offers them the best possible technology to protect their property and people. Even before access control, banks have used biometrics to enable secure financial transactions. Access control opens a whole new arena in the financial sector for biometric companies, becoming a critical factor in market growth.
The retail sector has taken a massive hit in recent months because of COVID-19. Brick and mortar stores worldwide had to close at least for a few weeks, if not months, as governments tried to contain the outbreak. As economies reopened, retail businesses had to ensure they followed strict protocols to avoid disease spread. Contactless solutions have become an integral part of retail now. Facial recognition helps companies to ensure employee attendance and access to restricted parts of retail stores.