Doug Bedell — October 3, 2008, 10:20 am

Face Recognition On An iPhone

Here’s a security technology to watch: Security InfoWatch reports that Animetrics, a New Hampshire company, is marketing a software program that turns an iPhone into a face recognition system. It’s called (you guessed it) iFace.

Security officers could use an iPhone to snap pictures and identify people with a face-mapping technology and a Web database. The technology is still in its infancy and not cheap. A system with a capacity to keep records on 10,000 people will be selling for $25,000 initially.

Ideally, pictures are taken head on from six to eight feet away. Photos that are not head-on are harder to match, but maybe not for long. The software rotates a face in 3D style.

A U.S. Army spokesperson said facial recognition is not yet sophisticated enough to be used alone. The Army uses an approach including facial recognition, iris and fingerprint scans. Clothing, such as hats and sunglasses, can affect accuracy.

“Face recognition is getting better,” says Paul Schuepp, Animetric’s CEO. “We take the technology way beyond to find a face, find eyes and find feature points to build three dimensional coordinates, an now you get topography and head rotation, and the matching gets more sophisticated.”

As iFace gets perfected, security officers will be able to keep their distance while getting IDs, it appears.

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