Face Recognition comes to Mobile Devices

Face Recognition comes to Mobile Devices


The Japanese division of Omron, an automation, sensing and control technology manufacturer has developed a face recognition system that they claim is accurate 99 percent of the time. In less than a second after you take your picture the software recognizes your face and unlocks your cell phone. The “OKAO Vision Face Recognition Sensor” can be integrated into PDAs, mobile phones, or any device with an integrated camera. The Face Recognition Sensor is Symbian, BREW, embedded Linux, and ITRON OS compatible.

“Functionality in mobile phones and other mobile devices is upgrading significantly from simple phone calls and e-mails to include a variety of access, payment and planning services. As a result, mobile devices are carrying ever more personal information including address books, schedules and payment information,” said Masato Kawade, Senior Manager of the Sensing Technology Laboratory in Kyoto.

“The “OKAO Vision Face Recognition Sensor”, featuring OMRON’s “Sensing & Control” core technology, has been designed to protect this information even when the mobile phone is lost or stolen.”

A tad bit overkill for the average consumer, but in the wake of all the celebrity cell phone hackings I wouldn’t be surprised to see this feature built into most handheld devices in the near future.


– Camera equipped mobile units enabled with the “OKAO Vision Face Recognition Sensor” require no additional hardware.
– The verification process takes less than a second from snapping the photograph.
– No need to adjust the camera position when taking the photo. If the face is included in the photo, it will automatically detect the owner’s face.

Specifications and Performance

– 99% recognition: The sensor verifies the owner 99% or more (OMRON tests).
– Memory usage: ROM 450 KB, RAM 370 KB
– Registered data size: 1.5 KB per photo
– Processing time: approx. one second ( with MSM 6500)
– Capable OS: Symbian OS, BREW, embedded Linux, ITRON