These new gun technologies may have slipped by you, but we will give you the info you need.
American gun owners, gun rights proponents, and even law enforcement officials can vouch for the new gun technology that exists today. The advancements are based on usefulness for everyday gun owners as well as freedom lovers everywhere.
These days firearms come with more installed safety features, with organizations like the NSSF and the NRA helping push the efforts forward, and it doesn't seem as though many folks can argue their merits.
Responsible gun owners everywhere can agree that things like accidental shootings, gun violence, and unauthorized users need to be eliminated from our gun culture. In some ways, it starts with firearms manufacturers. The onus then moves on to the buyers—you and I—to make responsible purchases based on these unique gun technologies. Anything that makes the shooting sports safer and more fun are good in our book.
Whether we are discussing child-proof biometric systems, fingerprint readers, or radio frequency identification, firearm safety should be the number one priority for everyone. Whether it is for hunting or just some weekend shooting recreation, the gun technologies that are making waves bring safety to the forefront.
Armatix iP1 Smart Gun
This semi-automatic .22 caliber pistol from the German company Armatix was introduced back in 2014 to a warm welcome, but that didn't last very long. The iP1 is a smart-gun, made to be used only by one authorized user, it's owner, and only through the use of its included W1 Active RFID watch. The watch sends a signal to the firearm, allowing for its safe unlocking.
In order for this unique pistol to be fired, the watch must be within 10 inches of the firearm. It also indicates the charge level of the watch, the gun, and the number of shots fired, among other things.
This interesting idea for a handgun/accessory combo has an optional feature of a "Target Control Module" which can be used as a Target Response System, (TRS) and meant to fire only toward a target that has been recognized as permitted by the system. If the handgun is aimed away from the permitted target, it then cannot be fired.
The iP1 was meant to be the cutting edge of new gun technology, but once the reviews were in, things got pretty dicey for Armatix. The gun tech was sound, but the worry was it would lead a precedent requiring such smart gun abilities in future firearm manufacturing.
Even the NRA chimed in, saying that, "NRA does not oppose new technological developments in firearms; however, we are opposed to government mandates that require the use of expensive, unreliable features, such as grips that would read your fingerprints before the gun will fire."
The iP1 was claimed as unreliable, with some saying that it failed to get fire all the way through its 10-round magazine and had a very high trigger pull weight. It's ultimate doom was the fact that anyone in possession of the watch and the pistol could then fire it, whether they were the owner or not.
And yes, being that it is a small caliber .22 it certainly doesn't have the stopping power of a 9mm or a .45 ACP, but we still understand the point.
Biofire Biometric Technology
Using advanced biometric technology ensures that your smart gun can be fired almost as fast as you pick it up. Biofire uses an advanced fingerprint sensor that ensures only authorized users can fire the gun.
Their website even says, "Each Biofire Smart Gun can register multiple users, but only the authorized owner has the ability to add or remove additional users."
According to Patriot 1 Technologies, "Biofire, a .40 caliber gun that reads the shooter's middle print, can open a gun in 0.5 seconds." The FAQ page for Biofire clearly states that once the owner purchases the gun, they must add their own fingerprint to become the admin user. The gun owner always has the option to sell the firearm by again authenticating it with their fingerprint and following another process that will wipe all the fingerprint identifications from the gun, including their own.
Gun safety shouldn't be about restricting access to firearms, just making firearms safer to use. For home defense, especially where children live, these firearms may have found a place. But the jury is still out on that.
Even with biometric technology, every firearm needs to be treated as if it is loaded and ready to fire.
IDENTILOCK Trigger Lock
IDENTILOCK represents yet another way gun technologies have cracked into the gun rights conversation. The gun's sophisticated trigger lock, not the gun itself, keeps the firearm from being accessible to unwanted hands.
Omer Kiyani, the inventor of the IDENTILOCK system and avid 2A supporter said on Officer.com, "I've watched the media, politicians and others, weigh in on our gun rights. I value and support our individual freedoms like the 2nd Amendment. I've wanted to find a balance between gun ownership and safety."
Officer Lindsey Bertomen (ret.) gave the system a review and said,
"I tested the IDENTILOCK trigger lock, a firearm-locking device designed to open with a touch of a fingerprint. At the end of my testing, I have a recommendation: This device should be issued with every duty gun."
That's some hardy praise for a system some may think is just another way of infringing on our rights, but let's face the facts: gun safety is always our number one priority. Once this high strength trigger lock is in place, only the registered fingerprint can remove it.
Officer Bertomen tested it extensively, and urged the acknowledgement that this is not the same as a gun safe. Your firearm should never be left unattended. He does state that, "one can manipulate the slide and remove or insert the magazine while the gun is locked."
Some may ask, how is that effective if you need your firearm immediately? Because the IDENTILOCK functions in a matter of 300 milliseconds, that's why.
Maybe the best part is that the owner can open the unit and let the unit drop away allowing the user to get on target as quickly as if drawing from a holster. The current model that is offered by Cabela's works for Sig Sauer 226/229, 1911s, Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm/SD9, and M&P Shield.
With the firearms industry at least trying to make things safer and more user friendly, it's up to us as gun owners to keep an open mind about our options. Even the National Rifle Association is on board with products and ideas that work safely, quickly, and don't infringe upon our gun rights.
Gun manufacturers everywhere are trying their hardest to give us new gun technology without further restraints on a control system that many in the United States feel is already too strong. Smart gun technology shouldn't have to be a dirty word when it comes to gun ownership and gun safety, but with all of the eyes and ears following the process, it's hard to ignore points from either side.
If we respectfully obey the gun laws that we have in place and keep our eyes fixed on the future of gun safety technologies, then the choices we make in America's gun shops can fundamentally shift. Even police departments need to keep the next generation of fire control right at their fingertips.
No matter how you view it, the technology affecting guns will only continue to move forward.