This month’s roundup of news from the technology sector includes Facebook’s possible travel app; the prevalence of U.K. facial tracking; and more.
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Facial recognition on the rise in the UK
While governmental security cameras are nothing new in the United Kingdom, there has been a recent increase in cameras and live facial recognition technology deployed by private companies, prompting some pushback in the city, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“Retailers, property firms and casinos are all taking advantage of Britain’s general comfort with surveillance to deploy their own cameras paired with live facial-recognition technology—the use of artificial intelligence to instantly recognize people caught in surveillance footage,” the newspaper reports. “Store owners and landlords have embraced the tools to thwart shoplifters, abusive customers and other troublemakers. Companies are also now using watch lists compiled by vendors that can help recognize flagged people who set foot on company property.”
New regulations mean a huge drop in Airbnb listings in Boston
Airbnb deactivated the majority of its listings in Boston in compliance with new regulations in the city earlier this month, according to Wired. Earlier in 2019, Airbnb had more than 6,000 listings in Boston, but city officials claimed only 737 are approved “for the time being.”
There has been a legal battle between Airbnb and Boston, the news outlet notes, as the company objected to rules that required sharing information with local authorities and taking down noncompliant listings.
Facebook is working on a new travel app
Tech giant Facebook is looking to create a variety of new products, according to The New York Times, including a possible travel app. The app would be developed by the company’s “New Product Experimentation Team.”
Travel industry experts have long expected Facebook to enter the travel space but with little concrete in terms of what that would mean for the larger distribution landscape.
Compiled by Sean McCracken.