Intel launches RealSense ID, facial recognition tech that uses the company’s depth-sensing cameras

Intel launched RealSense ID yesterday, a facial recognition resolution that depends on its RealSense depth-sensing know-how (via Gizmodo). RealSense began as a Kinect-style camera for touch-free interplay, however RealSense ID looks as if Intel’s try to reposition its digital camera enterprise in direction of safe, on-device facial recognition first, whereas additionally probably placing the corporate within the crossfire of controversy.

RealSense ID builds on Intel’s depth-sensing know-how with a neural community for figuring out faces, a devoted system-on-a-chip, and a safe ingredient that encrypts and processes consumer knowledge. The system ought to be taught and adapt to a face over time, working round facial hair, quite a lot of totally different pores and skin tones, and face masks, Gizmodo writes. The tech is obtainable on a module that may be built-in into different merchandise or as a standalone peripheral that may be plugged into a pc.

Intel’s RealSense ID.
Picture: Intel

Intel’s RealSense tech has been knocking round for a number of years, popping up in odd, tech demo use instances like inserting your face into Fallout 4, and extra helpful ones like unlocking a laptop computer with Windows Hello. Intel suggests this new utility of RealSense could possibly be utilized in quite a lot of settings, like ATMs, registers, and sensible locks. What the corporate doesn’t point out is the opposite in style use of facial recognition: governments and regulation enforcement businesses monitoring and profiling individuals.

Simply within the final yr, facial recognition software program created by Huawei was used to track the persecuted Uighur minority in China. And within the US this previous summer time, facial recognition tech was utilized by the New York Metropolis Police Division to trace a Black Lives Matter activist accused of assault. Intel says it processes facial recognition on-device, however it’s not clear how that might work to present you entry to a financial institution’s ATMs or at money registers. Past the potential for abuse, facial recognition software program has been discovered to be biased for each race and gender, opening up the chance for false positives. For instance, a model of Amazon’s facial recognition software Rekognition, had a more durable time figuring out individuals in the event that they have been feminine or dark-skinned than in the event that they have been white males.

Intel has taken steps to handle the potential for bias in RealSense ID by constructing out a extra various pattern of faces to coach RealSense on. “We’ve performed intensive knowledge assortment of all ethnicities from Asia, Europe, Center East Africa,” Intel told VentureBeat at a press briefing for the brand new system. Intel says RealSense ID has one-in-a-million probability of falsely figuring out somebody, however we’ll have to attend and see if outdoors researchers discover flaws.

Facial recognition isn’t the one future Intel imagines for RealSense. For this yr’s digital CES, the corporate introduced RealSense Touchless Control Software (TCS), which makes use of Intel’s RealSense Depth Digicam to permit you to work together with a touchscreen by hovering your finger over it, relatively than touching it. Like facial recognition, the brand new utility makes a whole lot of sense for a world nonetheless coping with a pandemic, and reveals there’s nonetheless some room for RealSense’s movement controller previous.

Intel’s RealSense ID peripheral is obtainable for pre-order now for $99, and the RealSense ID Module is obtainable in a pack of 10 for $750. Intel plans to start out transport each in March.

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