Microsoft has filed a patent with the United States Patent and Trademark Office for pressure-sensitive technology that could be used in devices such as smartphones, PCs, and video game controllers.
As spotted by Shacknews, the filing is for a "hand-held device having a body with a pressure-sensitive exterior surface" that could be used both in the context of a gaming controller, as well as in other devices.
The technology works by identifying a user based on a particular "pressure signature" on the device, which is fitted with pressure sensors. Each time a user grasps the device, the location of each sensor and the amount of pressure applied is recorded and stored, forming a unique signature. The pressure-profile signatures are associated with a user identity via username, email address, password, or gamertag, and are specific to the device.
Once identified, the technology could allow users to automatically log in to a gaming or mobile phone service and present an array of customised options.
"In another embodiment, the device is a mobile phone. Upon identifying the user holding the mobile phone, the technology unlocks the phone by providing the user's password, and displays the user's default screen," Microsoft's patent filing says.
According to the filing, this technology would allow for reliable and safe identification of individual users as well as provide for personalised content based on a user's unique pressure-profile signature.
Last November, Sony filed a patent for technology that could be used to develop biometric gaming controllers that read a player's state of mind.