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Apple, Samsung competition continues

Apple and Samsung smartphone competition is not limited to the patent fight. Apple offers another reason – It is buying mobile security company AuthenTec – which had only just signed a deal with Samsung for Android devices — for $356 million.

AuthenTec among other things, makes fingerprint sensor chips that are used for security and identification purposes; these are embedded in computing devices. The news was first reported by Reuters; the full announcement was filed with the Securities Exchange Commission.

Just earlier this month AuthenTec had signed a deal with Samsung to cover security and device management services to cater to the “BYOD” trend (Bring Your Own Device) — that is, workers taking their own handsets into their enterprise environment. The AuthenTec service would let IT managers quickly secure and authenticate those devices.

Security has become a very strong focus with smartphones: the more wireless we become the more of our lives we put into the cloud, with those devices becoming a key way of accessing it. With the introduction of mobile wallet services — something likely to be on Apple’s radar — the importance of securing our devices will become even greater.

We will have to wait and see exactly what Apple intends to do with this purchase, but it’s likely to mean a stronger set of enterprise-friendly features, and possibly some security and authentication services that can be used for the whole of the iPhone user base.

(Source: http://techcrunch.com)

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