Morpho to make boarding as easy as a phone call

At this year’s Vodafone Innovation Days, Morpho unveiled the "My ID, My Life" demonstration. The eID-based breakthrough combines Smartphone, biometric and NFC* technology to offer a simpler airline check-in experience.

Vodafone Innovation Days are a major date for the customers, partners and suppliers of mobile telecoms operator Vodafone Germany. This year's event, held from October 8 to 10 in Düsseldorf, held around the theme "Vodafone Solutions for Life". And since making users' lives easier was the very reason behind Morpho's "My ID, My Life", it was the perfect occasion to test it out.

Onboard revolution

This highly innovative solution is set to revolutionize airport boarding as we know it by uploading passengers' electronic identity, or eID, onto NFC* smartphones. "Airlines want to make things easier for their passengers, and have more fluid traffic in the airport at critical points," says Michael Menne, Global Account Marketing Manager Vodafone at Morpho. "At Morpho, we already have expertise in biometrics and smartcards (we've been supplying Vodafone since 2008) needed to meet this demand for newly-developed eID applications."

Just enroll and board

The first step is to create an eID. This activates the technology before it is used for the first time. A person's eID is derived from their identity information and facial biometric data, then securely uploaded to their smartphone's SIM card. After this has been completed, the person can check in online by just scanning their face with their smartphone. If the eID is a biometric match, they are redirected to the airline application. The user can even pre-check their bags in online if they have an RFID* baggage label. They can then drop off their bags, with the receipt sent directly to their smartphone. Finally, at the boarding gate, an NFC- and camera-equipped smartgate automatically performs one last identity check. If successful, the passenger is free to board.

As Michael Menne puts it, "This example demonstrates just how useful Morpho's eID solutions are for simplifying the boarding process, without compromising on security or privacy. We believe that the trust of our future users will be built on three key pillars: an eID based on reliable data, totally secure data, and an effective authentication system."

* Near Field Communication is a form of wireless high-frequency and short-distance communication technology between two devices.
** Radio Frequency IDentification captures data via a "tag" or "label" made up of a miniature antenna linked to an electronic chip. The luggage too

Once at the airport, the passenger heads directly to the bag drop-off area, where they use their smartphone at an NFC kiosk. In just a matter of seconds, their face is scanned by the kiosk camera, their eID is checked, and their identity authenticated.