Amazon announces improvements to its facial recognition technology

Amazon has announced accuracy and functionality improvements to its facial recognition software Rekognition. On the one hand, the accuracy of gender identification and age range estimation is now improved, the company notes. On the other hand, Rekognition has better accuracy for emotion detection in the case of ‘happy’, ‘sad’, ‘angry’, ‘surprised’, ‘disgusted’, ‘calm’, and ‘confused’. Moreover, the tool is now also able to recognise ‘fear’. Amazon’s facial recognition technology has been under the spotlight in several occasions, as critics are concerned about potential bias and discrimination generated by its use. Recently, the American Civil Liberties Union argued that the technology is not ready to be used by law enforcement agencies, after a test which revealed that Rekognition wrongly flagged several California lawmakers as criminals.