The rise of facial recognition technology in China – China latest business and technology news

Business & Technology

A summary of the top news in Chinese business and technology for May 16, 2017. Part of the daily SupChina news roundup "China’s plan for Pakistan, and drone registration."

Face++, a Beijing-based facial recognition technology startup, is now valued at roughly a billion dollars. Technology from Face++ is being used in several apps such as Alipay, a mobile app used by more than 120 million people in China, and Didi, China’s dominant ride-hailing company. Baidu, which operates China’s most popular search engine, is developing a system that lets people pick up train tickets by showing their face.

The technology is expanding quickly in China for surveillance and convenience purposes. As the Chinese government has a large centralized database of ID card photos, officials are using software to identify suspected criminals with video surveillance cameras. Also, to tackle the problem of toilet paper theft from public bathrooms, Beijing is using facial recognition at some tourist sites to limit the amount of toilet paper that each person can take. One of China’s top universities installed scanners with facial recognition technology in a female dormitory. In a different university, a lecturer is using the technology on his students to check on the boredom levels in class.