Facial Recognition Technology: Marketing to the 21st Century

(Written by Alexander Crawford. Data sourced from Finviz.)

Marketing has just become a lot more specific. Imagine a digital display at a mall that scans the dimensions of your face, determines your sex and age, and then advertises specifically to your demographic. Several companies are now using facial recognition technology to target their audience, according to the LA Times, although privacy concerns abound.

Intel Corp. (INTC) makes facial recognition software and says it is widely adaptable.

“You can put this technology into kiosks, vending machines, digital signs,” said Christopher O’Malley, director of retail marketing for Intel’s embedded and communications group. “It’s going to become a much more common thing in the next few years.”

Adidas is working with Intel to develop digital walls with facial recognition for a limited number of stores in the U.S. or Britain. Kraft (KFT) is in talks with a supermarket chain to test face-scanning kiosks as well.

The technology is even being used for the bar scene. The mobile app SceneTap uses facial recognition from cameras mounted at bars to keep tabs on the male/female breakdown and age mixes of crowds at various locations, giving patrons a “real-time check” of the scene.

And even Google (GOOG) is getting in on the facial recognition trend. Just this month, they acquired facial recognition company PittPatt.

In June, Facebook introduced a facial recognition feature that automatically identified friends when you uploaded photos of them. Many objected, calling it “creepy and invasive” and the company apologized, but the feature still exists.

For those of you who believe that facial recognition technology will only become more universal with time, we compiled some interesting data on the stocks of the companies involved in this technology.

Use this list as a starting-off point for your own analysis.

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1. Access a thorough description of all companies mentioned
2. Compare analyst ratings for all stocks mentioned below
3. visualise annual returns for all stocks mentioned

1. Google Inc. (GOOG): Internet Information Providers Industry. Market cap of $158.51B. The stock is currently stuck in a downtrend, trading 13.08% below its SMA20, 8.82% below its SMA50, and 13.04% below its SMA200. It’s been a rough couple of days for the stock, losing 12.92% over the last week.

2. Intel Corporation (INTC): Food Diversified Industry. Market cap of $59.08B. The stock has gained 19.17% over the last year.

3. Kraft Foods Inc. (KFT): Security & Protection Services Industry. Market cap of $1.09B. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 22.83% (equivalent to 15.67 days of average volume). The stock has gained 33.04% over the last year.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to see how analyst ratings have changed for the stocks mentioned above. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.

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