Shoppers could pay for their watches by selfie


Watch buyers could soon be buying a timepiece they like and paying for it with a selfie.

Internet giant Amazon has reportedly filed a patent that will allow customers to complete their purchase by taking a selfie, rather than using conventional password methods.

Buyers will essentially be required to send two photos to Amazon: one selfie and another where they blink, smile or tilt their head to show they are a real person.

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Facial recognition software has typically been hailed as the future of secure online payment, but Amazon claims its approach is safer as software can be fooled into thinking a buyer is real by someone holding a photograph of the user in front of the camera. Amazon said it is also less likely to be hacked than user passwords.

The firm is understood to have made its patent application to the US Patent and Trademark Office in October, but details of the submission have only just been published.

In its application, Amazon suggested that paying for goods using selfies would also be less socially uncomfortable for consumers to manage than entering a password.

“The entry of these passwords is not user-friendly…and can require a user to turn away from friends or co-workers when entering a password, which can be awkward or embarrassing,” it stated.

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Andrew Seymour

The author Andrew Seymour