Facebook’s photo-sharing app Moments is finally launching in Europe, TechCrunch reports — but it’s missing one very important feature.
Its facial recognition capabilities are nowhere to be seen.
Moments, first launched in the US in June 2015, helps users organise the photos they take on their phone, without having to upload them to Facebook. It sorts them into events, and — and this is its masterstroke — automatically recognises who is in the photos, tags them, and offers to send the photos to them.
While it was launched elsewhere in the world, it never made its way to Canada and Europe, precisely because of this feature and the privacy and legal concerns that surround the technology.
But Facebook has now decided to roll out Moments in these regions, albeit without the facial recognition technology.
TechCrunch has the scoop, and reports that the social networking giant is using a bit of a cop-out called “object recognition … based on features like the distance between a person’s eyes and their ears” to try and identify which people appear in multiple photos in a person’s camera roll, but less accuracy than Facebook’s proper facial recognition tech.
It groups photos that “appear to include the same face,” according to Facebook, which the user then manually identifies.
So it can still help organise and share your photos — just don’t expect the same level of sophistication that has made it one of the most popular apps in the app store elsewhere in the world.