The revelation, announced as part of Microsoft’s TechEd North America conference, means that users who have set up a Microsoft Account will be able to log into their PCs, buy apps, launch software and lock sensitive folders all with a swipe of a finger.
As such, Windows 8.1 will be the first iteration of the desktop operating system with this type of technology built in. With the right drivers and software installed, more tech-savvy consumers can already set up and use standalone fingerprint readers with Windows PCs.
According to The Verge, Microsoft is now working very closely with its manufacturing partners in the hopes that they will start building fingerprint scanners into their notebook and desktop computers.
Microsoft is not alone in this regard. Apple is widely rumored to be embedding a biometric fingerprint scanner into the homekey of its upcoming iPhone 5S in order to beef up security while also offering users a simpler way of logging into numerous web-based accounts and services.
Meanwhile, through its Motorola Mobility subsidiary, Google is taking security even further and is currently experimenting with tattoos and even password pills which, when swallowed, broadcast an authentication signal triggered by stomach acids, through a user’s fingers and to the device being used.