A press release on the PR Newswire said, breathlessly, “Biofire Announces World’s First Smart Gun® Secured by Fingerprint and Facial Recognition.” Will this smartphone that goes bang ever see widespread production and acceptance by gun owners? I know a lot of shooters happy with their “dumb guns.”
The press release further asserts, “The 9mm handgun fires only for authorized users, ensuring it can’t be used by children or criminals.” Further, “Today [April 13] Biofire Technologies unveiled the Biofire Smart Gun®, a 9mm handgun that uses fingerprint and facial recognition biometrics to ensure only authorized users can fire it. Designed for home defense, the Biofire Smart Gun enables firearm owners to defend themselves against external threats while preventing unauthorized access and misuse. The shooting experience is seamless: authorized users can simply pick the gun up and fire it. The Biofire Smart Gun is the first and only biometric firearm on the market.”
Well, yes, because gun owners are leery of their “smart guns” turning into “bricks” without warning and without recourse, so market support for such a radical idea gets stuck in our barrels like a lead slug pushed only by a primer charge. One of the primary tests we conduct every month concerns reliability, and guns that fail to go boom fail to get a passing grade in these pages. “D” grades and “F” grades are what unreliable guns get here, and we will be trying this gun out when it goes to full production. No easy lift there, either, because the handgun [pictured at left] has a total price of $1499, with a refundable $149 deposit charged up front. Biofire says it will begin fulfilling customer orders in early 2024. Biofire Technologies is based in Broomfield, Colorado.
The company’s goals are laudatory: Keep active firearms out of the hands of children and criminals. According to the release, “Biofire’s approach is totally novel: we’ve applied high-precision engineering principles to make a meaningful impact on preventable firearm deaths among children. No one had tried that before. As a result, Biofire is now offering the most technologically advanced consumer firearm the industry’s ever seen,” said Kai Kloepfer, CEO and Founder of Biofire. “The Biofire Smart Gun shoots like any [other] high-quality firearm, but it also feels like you’re holding the future in your hand. This is a new era in firearm safety driven by ambition and optimism, motivated by the idea that we can in fact help save people’s lives.”
We have tested a handful of fingerprint-ID safes in these pages, but we never looked at the safes as something that needed to ride along on our hips or operate in rain, snow, and cold, so we didn’t test those aspects of them. Will the Biofire gun succeed where others have failed?
Time will tell. Color me skeptical.