Face Recognition for the Hospitality Industry

Face recognition has recently become mainstream due to Apple`s Face ID feature.

But it has many other applications – from surveillance to marketing across various industries, including hospitality.

Let`s look into how the technology works and what`re its applications in the sector:

What is face recognition?

Simply put, face recognition is a biometric method of recognition that can identify people by analyzing their faces. In other words, machines can extract attributes about individuals` faces and/or skin textures by looking at an image or video.

Being around since the early 1990s, the technology was used by the United States Department of Defense in public safety and law enforcement scenarios. Nowadays, governments around the world are employing face recognition for monitoring (and crime prevention) of airports, festivals, and other big organized events

Yet, the technology has been surrounded by a certain amount of controversy.

Face recognition may be used (and is sometimes used) in ways that violate an individual`s right to privacy. Many people feel that the collection of their biometric data is intrusive. Plus, there`re concerns that authorities and companies that store the data can share it with third parties without permission.

Applications in the Hospitality Industry

You might be wondering:

What are the possible applications of face recognition into the hospitality industry? Let`s explore some of them:

1. Personalized customer service

By matching data to the faces of real customers, hotels and guest houses can provide more personalized services.

For example?

Some hotels offer guests to upload a picture of themselves during the booking process. When they arrive at the hotel, the staff greets them by name and uses their booking information to make sure they have the stay that exceeds their expectations.

Any other cool implementations of face recognition?

Two of the Chinese Marriott properties have used the technology for fast and easy check-ins. Without the need of relying on staff members and waiting on queues:

2. Processing payments

Imagine your accommodation property could process payments in a more efficient and cost-effective way?

Hotels, guest houses, restaurant, airlines, and tourism companies can all use face recognition to automate payment processes – from applying discounts to completing transactions without wasting the time of your staff and customers.

Here`s how you can pay with a smile in China:

Mastercard has also allowed new payment experiences that rely on finger scan or face recognition identification:

3. Improved security

Face recognition technology can alert hotel staff if there`re some suspicious visitors or guests who are under investigation. In this way, troubles can be identified and prevented.

Another example can be given with face recognition access and verification of guests. If a guest, for example, wants to go to the gym, their hotel room or any other facility, they can do that by simply scanning their faces.

Here`s the smart hotel solution that is introduced by Bittel:

Facing the future

Face recognition technology holds a promise to transform the hospitality industry. It has already been implemented by airports, companies, and accommodation properties around the world to improve security and efficiency.

Speaking in numbers:

The global facial recognition market is expected to grow from USD 4.05 Billion in 2017 to USD 7.76 Billion by 2022, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13.9 %, according to Research and Markets.

Early adopters of the technology could reap the benefits from this growth trend. Have you ever considered employing face recognition at your accommodation property? Why (not)? Share in the comments down below.

Want to learn more about the latest technologies in the hospitality sector? Click here.

 
Yoana Hristova
Content Writer & Strategist