In China, People Now Pay for the Subway By Using Their Face

china subway

A subway operator in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, China is testing a payment method that allows passengers to pay for their ticket using their face.

The facial recognition ticketing service, which is currently in trial mode at Futian station, could potentially help ease the handling of a massive number of passengers on a daily basis, according to South China Morning Post.

Instead of taking out their phones or showing a ticket, commuters will be able to stand in front of a tablet-sized screen near the entrance gate and have their face scanned. After that, the ticket fare will automatically be deducted from the bank linked to their account.

This isn’t the first time facial recognition has been incorporated in payment methods. A KFC branch in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China used a similar model by allowing customers to pay for their meal by smiling.

To use facial ticketing in the future, passengers will also need preregistration of their facial information and link their payment methods to their accounts, just like them making payments at the KFC restaurant,” a staff member at the station said.

The Chinese government has installed millions of highly-advanced A.I.-based surveillance cameras across the country to aid local law enforcement in apprehending criminals. But the technology can also be used to monitor people coming in and out of an establishment such as Peking University.

The technology could also have several glitches. Last year, a surveillance camera tagged Chinese businesswoman Dong Mingzhu as a jaywalker, but it turned out that the captured image came from a large advertisement posted on the side of a passing bus.

Featured Image via Wikimedia Commons / 颐园新居 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

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