NEC goes Minority Report: Targeted advertising from face recognition

Posted by Nino Marchetti

Tokyo (Japan) - The science fiction of targeted virtual advertising as you move around town has now entered a phase of reality from an announcement NEC made today. The recently launched technology, called Eye Flavor, uses facial recognition to "guess" at what people want to see.








NEC's Eye Flavor technology, said the company, is Japan's first all-in-one digital signage board. It consists of a large-size LCD display, top-mounted camera, streaming controller and effective analysis software. This product, by using face recognition technology, targets advertising content according to the customer's gender and age range, which is conducted in real-time as passer-bys approach the sign.



NEC says it has already run this Eye Flavor technology at the Granduo Tachikawa, a commercial facility in Japan. This trial run was conducted for 21 days last October. It measured the number of viewers as well as viewing duration of advertising contents in terms of time period, gender and age. In addition, the distance between the display and each viewer was also measured.



NEC added that, unlike commonly used survey methods, it felt the effectiveness of the outdoor advertising was obtained on a timely basis with quantitative results that were more detailed.



The system is currently available only in Japan, with the facial recognition technology only applying to Japanese faces. Trials are said to be ongoing, however, "as an advanced application solution."



See NEC's press releases ONE and TWO (in Japanese) for images.