Sony is to release a fingerprint-authentication solution for Mac OS X called Puppy Suite.

The product consists of a Sony-developed fingerprint scanner, and software developed by third-party developers. It has been designed to add another security layer to OS X's password log-in. Log-in options can be adjusted to using fingerprint or fingerprint plus password.

Sony said: "The solution is based on a process in which a fingerprint is read digitally. It is more secure and accurate than other fingerprint identification technologies. A software development kit is also available."

Puppy Suite for OS X costs $199, though it is available for $179 (a special pre-release price) until the product ships later this month.

The product will be distributed initially in the US by Pacific Software Publishing.