Metalenz Launches Polar ID Enabling Simple, Secure Face Unlock for Smartphones
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02 | 26 | 2024

Metalenz Confirms Samsung ISOCELL Vizion Image Sensor as Light- Engine for Polar ID, the World's Smallest, Most Affordable and Secure Face Unlock Solution.

  • Metalenz chose Samsung’s new high-performance global-shutter NIR image sensor, the ISOCELL Vizion 931, as light-engine for its revolutionary polarization-sorting imaging system.
  • Collaboration pairs industry-leading image sensor capabilities of ISOCELL Vizion 931 with Metalenz groundbreaking ability to sort light based on the state of its polarization.
  • Polar ID leverages the unique polarization signature of the human face to create the world’s smallest, most affordable, and secure biometric face unlock solution for smartphones.
  • The proven performance and manufacturing scale of Samsung’s semiconductor business brings instant high-volume supply capabilities Polar ID production that can meet the requirements of even the largest OEMs.

February 26, 2024, Barcelona, Spain – Meta-optics industry leader Metalenz announced today that it has chosen Samsung Electronics’ ISOCELL Vizion 931 as image sensor for Polar ID, the world’s only consumer-grade imaging system that can sense the full polarization state of light. Unlike other facial biometric solutions that require multiple different images to work, the polarization signature of a human face enables the fast and secure recognition and authentication from a single Polar ID image. The powerful simplicity of Polar ID enables a 50% size and cost reduction over traditional face unlock solutions, and partnership with Samsung provides industry leading image sensor performance and manufacturing scale to drive rapid smartphone adoption.

“Our collaboration with Metalenz is not just about combining technologies; it marks a pivotal advancement in biometric imaging capabilities, making face unlock solutions with enhanced security and affordability accessible on a global scale,” said CY Lee, Vice President of the Sensor Sales & Marketing Team at Samsung Electronics. “We are energized to collaborate with Metalenz, a company that shares our commitment to bringing visionary solutions to market.”

“Polar ID is poised to bring secure face unlock to hundreds of millions of phones and a whole new class of sensing to millions of people. Leveraging the performance and scale of Samsung’s ISOCELL Vizion 931 image sensor allows our Polar ID cameras to quickly and efficiently determine the polarization information in a scene, from which our imaging algorithms and machine learning models authenticate the Polar ID images,” said Rob Devlin, Metalenz CEO and co-founder. “The collaboration with Samsung marks a new era for mobile vision systems and provides Metalenz with a partner that has the proven quality and scale required to bring Polar ID to all phones.”

Within the Polar ID system,  Metalenz’ breakthrough polarization-sensitive meta-optic is combined with a derivative of the new ISOCELL Vizion 931 image sensor. Coupled with Metalenz technology, the same light-engine that is used in the ISOCELL Vizion 931 can now capture polarized images in the near infrared spectrum with industry-leading quantum efficiency and advanced global shutter technology, allowing Polar ID cameras to enable the next generation of biometric imaging.

Polar ID cameras will make their public debut at MWC 2024 in Barcelona, where Metalenz will showcase the speed, security, compact footprint, and unparalleled affordability of this new face unlock solution integrated into a smartphone reference design powered by the new Snapdragon® 8 Gen 3 Mobile Platform.

Polar ID is under early evaluation with several leading smartphone OEMs. Additional evaluation kits will be made available in Q2 2024. OEMs looking to schedule a live demo with Metalenz at MWC Barcelona can email to schedule.

About Metalenz: Metalenz is at the forefront of driving innovation in optics with metasurface technology, providing solutions that redefine the possibilities of mobile imaging and sensing. Metalenz is the first company to bring metasurfaces to mass markets, with millions of its meta-optics already integrated in consumer devices, combining the functionality of three or four complex lenses and components into a single flat device, mass produced in existing semiconductor foundries. The company’s first full system solution, Polar ID, is a groundbreaking, ultra-secure, small, and affordable face unlock solution for mobile that harnesses the unique polarized light sorting capabilities of metasurfaces, enables mobile devices to see beyond the limits of current visual systems.

About Samsung ISOCELL Vizion 931: Designed in a one-to-one ratio VGA resolution (640 x 640) that packs more pixels in a smaller form factor, the ISOCELL Vizion 931 is optimal for eye tracking as well as facial and gesture detection in imaging solutions utilizing near-infrared illumination at 850nm or 940nm. The ISOCELL Vizion 931 also achieves the industry’s highest level of quantum efficiency, delivering an impressive 60% at 850nm infrared light wavelength and 38% at 940nm. This feat was made possible by incorporating Front Deep Trench Isolation (FDTI) which places an insulation layer between pixels to maximize light absorption, in addition to the backside scattering technology (BST) that enhances light absorption.

Source: Samsung Unveils Two New ISOCELL Vizion Sensors Tailored for Robotics and XR Applications – Samsung Global Newsroom

About Metalenz

Qualcomm, Snapdragon, Hexagon, and Spectra are trademarks of Qualcomm Incorporated, registered in the United States or other counties.

Snapdragon, Qualcomm Hexagon, and Qualcomm Spectra are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

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