Four Japanese companies across different industries – electronics manufacturer Panasonic, banking corporation Resona, credit card firm JCB and Dai Nippon Printing – will work together to launch a payment platform using facial recognition technology in Japan.
The system will firstly allow customers to start making banking transactions using facial recognition technology for identification as early as April next year. It will be expanded to include accommodation check-ins, settlements at retail shops and admission and exit at event venues. The technology will also be put into use in industries such as tourism and taxi services.
The facial recognition system will verify the users’ ID by matching facial images captured mainly by cameras at facilities and the facial images that they have registered to a common server. The data is fully secured and cannot be accessed by any external user.
The four-party partnership will combine the strengths of the different organisations: Panasonic will leverage its experience in facial recognition technology, Dai Nippon Printing has already started to use identity verification using digital technology, while JCB will play its part in providing settlement services. Resona in turn will manage the data security.
Resona also plans to introduce the system on a trial basis for employees at its headquarters by the end of the year and allow customers to take related procedures at outlets of its bank units without cash cards or passbooks by 2022.
Not the first foray for Japan in facial tech
This is not the first foray into facial recognition in Japan. NEC and 7-Eleven Japan has already been working together in retail payments using facial recognition technology, with people being able to be identified even when they wear a mask. Besides Japan, the retail store has also launched AI technology using facial recognition across stores in Thailand and Australia.
Kindai University and financial payments machine manufacturer Glory began testing a facial recognition payment service earlier in April.
Globally, the market for facial recognition is set to reach $9.1 billion, as the technology expands to autonomous driving, finance and medical treatment, according to Indian research company Mordor Intelligence.
While Chinese companies have been dominant in this field, Japanese companies are beginning to move into the space.