Feeds

Big Beardie's watching: Gaze into the screen... it shall gaze also into you

Sending out an SMS: How the face-recog ad-push tech works

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Walk into a petrol station in the UK and you might see an Amscreen advertising things to you. But it's not only you who's doing the looking; it is looking at you too.

It's nothing personal...

The screen uses technology from Quividi to work out your age and gender.

It looks at hair length, cheek structure, eye distance and dark shadows to categorise you as male or female and in one of four age groups – under 15, 15 to 34, 35 to 66 and over 65. The firm that made it claims a whopping 86 per cent accuracy.

It doesn’t recognise people so it can’t say “Hello Chief Anderton”, nor does it remember people with a view to selling you whatever you bought last time. Amscreen is, however, looking to technologies where the customer agrees to be tracked – things like iBeacon – but it is staying clear of anything which might encroach on personal data (such as remembering people by logging the MAC addresses of their smartphones).

The system is, however, connected to the shop’s EPOS data and so can promote products that are selling well or which are complementary to those which are selling well – such as promoting orange juice when there is a run on bread. Advertisements can be tailored to other factors – typically the weather – Amscreen refers to it as an “offline connected platform”.

The Optimeyes tech scans people

Just as Amstrad was Alan Michael Sugar Trading, Amscreen is Lord Sugar’s modern take on posters, perhaps the world’s oldest advertising medium.

The device hardware and software is proprietary – The UK Apprentice boss insisted that they have full ownership – uses a standard webcam and has GPS.

Advertisers are sold packages of viewers – something that can’t be done with posters – and the information is tailored to the customer and the location so that the standard advertisement can be overlaid with the name of the nearest shop selling whatever is in the advert.

The main content is pushed from a server in Bolton. Amscreen sends an SMS to the screen which then fires up a 3G connection to pull down the latest advertisements.

Amscreen is looking to improve the demographic information, but without impinging on personal privacy. So it will be some time before it measures your feet and offers you some size nine chukka boots. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.