Traveler’s using Terminal 4 at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) will be the next to trial biometric boarding technology as Gemalto launches a pilot with a “leading airline.” The goal of the trial is to gauge if facial recognition can meet passenger needs and expectations, meeting or surpassing the use of traditional boarding passes. Of course, it will also be watched by Customs and Border Protection to ensure that all U.S. Exit requirements are fulfilled as well.
At airports around the world, the physical facilities are already overcrowded so carving out large swaths of space for new entry and exit processes has proven to be a show stopper
Travel numbers are expected to double in the next 20 years, reaching 7.8 billion passengers, and the industry is scrambling to meet new government demands for increased security and consumer expectations of convenience. Facial recognition is currently positioned as a key to achieving both goals.
“Being able to use your face instead of your boarding pass will not only enhance security but allow passengers to board more easily and quickly,” said Neville Pattinson, SVP of Government Programs, Gemalto.
A key to any change in the boarding process is to minimize the required infrastructure changes for the airport and airlines. At airports around the world, the physical facilities are already overcrowded so carving out large swaths of space for new entry and exit processes has proven to be a show stopper.
The LAX pilot is efficient with regards to space as it is integrated into existing agent podiums to facilitate boarding. Passengers will approach the gate and receive confirmation via a computer screen and camera following a facial verification from Customs and Border Patrol’s Traveler Verification Services. Once verified, the captured images will be wiped from the system to ensure privacy for all passengers.
At the 2018 Biometric Technology Rally sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, Gemalto’s facial recognition technology fared well, scoring a 99.44% successful acquisition rate in less than five seconds.