Last year, once-fringe concepts like neural networks and deep learning suddenly went mainstream, as The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune and other publications proclaimed it “the year of AI.”
But the AI technology that has garnered the most attention has been face recognition. When Apple replaced the fingerprint scanner with face recognition technology on the iPhone X, the product started a nationwide conversation. While it’s impossible to know all the ways that AI will transform the world, here are ten common things that could soon be completely replaced by facial recognition.
What if, instead of using a key to start your car, you could use your face? Cars in China are already using face recognition as a means of unlocking cars, and it’s probably only a matter of time before cars worldwide start replacing car keys with face recognition. Not only is it more convenient, it also adds an additional layer of protection, making it far harder for thieves to steal cars.
ATMs in Macau have already started using face recognition. Whether face recognition will replace ATM cards or provide a powerful second form of authentication remains to be seen. In either case, the technology can provide a bank’s customers with a powerful combination of security and convenience.
No one likes waiting in long lines at grocery or other retail stores. And according to Georges Nahon, CEO of Orange Silicon Valley, it’s only a matter of time before lines in retail stores are a thing of the past. “Facial recognition is already completely transforming security with biometric capabilities being adopted,” Nahon stated. “And seeing how tech and retail are merging, like Amazon is with Whole Foods, I can see a near future where people will no longer need to stand in line at the store.”
In addition to replacing your car keys, face recognition has the potential to replace your house keys as well. In fact, a new Moscow apartment building has already unveiled a fully functioning face recognition system that will replace residents’ keys. In addition to offering security, it provides residents with a better experience overall. Homeowners will be able to enter the building without a key, but that’s just the beginning. The system also automatically selects each resident’s floor when they enter elevators, and monitors the cars and pedestrians leaving the complex.
Face recognition is already transforming airports. Systems like FaceFirst are radically improving security at airports. But soon, face recognition might replace boarding passes. In fact, AirAsia has already started using face recognition instead of boarding passes. Flying can be stressful thanks to long security lines and lines at gates. But face recognition has the potential to radically streamline the boarding process and offer the coveted combination of safety with unprecedented convenience.
In addition to replacing airport boarding passes, facial recognition could soon replace train and subway tickets. An experimental face recognition is currently being tested at U.K. train stations. The system is already working with a high degree of accuracy. It’s easy to imagine how face recognition could eventually revolutionize travel on trains, subways buses and other forms of public transportation, making travel far more convenient.
Over the past decade, password fatigue has been an increasingly observed phenomenon. One study found that 75% of consumers are frustrated with having to memorize passwords, while 58% of consumers saying a new password keeps them from signing up for a new account. But face recognition may soon completely replace passwords. Imagine if, instead of having to memorize complex passwords, you could access any app or device you wanted using your face? When properly designed, a face recognition system can be far more secure than even a complex alphanumeric password.
Australia is planning on being the first country to replace passports with face recognition (as well as other biometric identifiers like fingerprint scanning and iris scanning). They are calling it their “seamless traveler” system, which aims to make international flights as easy to take as domestic ones. The program hopes to be in all Australian airports by 2019. Is it only a matter of time before face recognition replaces passports worldwide?
Imagine a society in which you can pay for goods, withdraw money from ATMs and get into 21+ bars and nightclubs just using your face. This seems to be the direction things are headed, as face recognition continues to provide new opportunities daily life more convenient. Pretty soon, the wallet might go the way of the telegraph.
Apple made waves when it replaced the fingerprint scanner on the iPhone X with facial recognition. Apple’s reason for doing so was that Face ID is “two times faster and 20 times safer than Touch ID.” Face ID has also replaced Touch ID for Apple Pay. If face recognition is faster and more accurate than fingerprints, it seems highly possible that face recognition could replace fingerprints across a variety of use cases. Already, face recognition is being used by law enforcement in addition to fingerprints. Might face recognition someday replace fingerprints altogether?