snapchat AI FEATURE
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Facial and image recognition are getting even better as machines continue to learn.

Snapchat, long known for its photo filters, ups its game, adding new image-recognition filters. These can now recognize certain pictures on your phone, including beaches, concerts, pets, sports, and food.

For example, snapping a photo of food may unlock a sticker that says "What diet?" A picture you take of your dog allows you to use the filter "It's a pawty!" These filters come as Snapchat looks to redesign its app in an effort to become relevant to a vast demographic of users.

If image recognition filters on Snapchat may seem a little creepy—and perhaps invasive—to you, know that image recognition is standard for today's tech. TechCrunch writes that object recognition is a part of many photo-sharing apps, like Apple, Google, and Amazon's photo apps.

Facial recognition is a norm for something like Google Photos as well, with Android allowing users to search photos for anything from cities, events, to people.

Bloomberg recently reported that facial recognition has also made its way into London's Heathrow Airport and Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport, with the Australian government also heavily interested in implementing the technology. Facial recognition could help ease congestion in airport security lines, scanning passenger features, boarding passes, and faces to create a "contactless" airport experience.

The workings behind recognition technology is machine learning and artificial intelligence—an industry that continues to grow exponentially. Here, certain machine technology is programmed to continuously learn—think IBM's Watson. As image and facial recognition get more advanced, we can expect the technology behind it to grow as well. See what Jason Deign has to say about the future of machine learning, and what Melissa Rowley thinks AI can do for healthcare.

A machine's algorithms can make them so intelligent that they can recognize patterns and make predictions and decisions. The same pattern recognition that can make something fun like Snapchat filters also infiltrates more serious industries like healthcare, energy, and even networking.

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About Stephanie Chan

Stephanie Ellen Chan is the Editorial and Video Producer at Cisco. She has a passion for writing about the intersection of culture, media, art, and technology.