Facebook completes Face.com acquisition (Biometric Update)
Awesome News – Facebook Acquires Face.com (Face.com Blog)
They’re understandably pleased.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed though various reports peg the price at $80 million to $100 million. The Israeli startup, which provides automated facial recognition of photos, also has a mobile photo app called Klik.
Face.com has been providing its service to a number of third-party developers and the company said in its blog post that it will continue to support those developers after the acquisition.
Facebook’s albatross — and its biggest opportunity — is its fast-growing mobile user base. Today’s acquisition sheds light on Facebook’s plan to ensure it doesn’t lose mobile users, and to turn those half-billion people into revenue and profits.
Face.com specializes in facial recognition — its technology is used by 45,000 developers. And the company has a special expertise in mobile facial recognition: its Klik app tags people within photos before they’re even taken, while you’re holding your phone up. Google and Apple also offer facial recognition technology to tag people in photos, but Face.com is distinguished by its mobile focus, which could give Facebook users the advantage of quickly tagging friends while uploading on the go.
Of course, some people worry that adding better facial recognition technology is problematic given Facebook’s massive data store and track record on privacy…
Facebook acquires facial recognition software company (Computer World)
Sarah Downey, a privacy analyst with pro-privacy software vendor Abine, indicated that the technology was particularly alarming in the hands of Facebook.
“There is nothing more concerning in the privacy sphere than the marriage of Facebook and facial recognition,” she said in an email. “Every time you’re tagged, Facebook learns more about your face and how it looks with or without glasses, in various lighting, with facial hair, etc. It’s one of the few data sources that Facebook has yet to monetize, and the acquisition of Face.com suggests that making money off your face is on their to-do list.”