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China embraces FR for payments; Chinese & Indian robots compete for business

Can I use my face here? That will do nicely, sir! Facial recognition is a big deal in China. Not just
July 31 · Issue #36 · View online
Asia AI News
Can I use my face here?
That will do nicely, sir!
Facial recognition is a big deal in China. Not just because China’s facial recognition database includes nearly every one of its 1.4 billion citizens. Nor because of the scandal earlier in the year that saw millions of facial scan records compromised because a security vendor’s FR database was breached. China is also the world’s biggest test-bed for facial recognition payment solutions.
According to the South China Morning Post, retailers in a number of Chinese cities - from supermarkets to bakers - have started accepting payments via facial recognition. The implications for facial recognition payments are immense. Not only does it negate the need for a smart phone - or any consumer smart device for that matter - it is equally applicable to connected or the disconnected. It’s not necessary to adopt a digital lifestyle to pay by FR: one just needs a face!
In other news, Chinese and Indian robot manufacturers are duking it out for a share of Japan’s warehouse robotics market. As reported by Asia Nikkei, Japan has a labour shortage and Japanese robot manufacturers are unable to satisfy all the demand for new robots.
Oh, and National University of Singapore now has a driverless shuttle bus. And other tidbits below.
PS. For the under 40s: ‘That will do nicely’ was the tag line for a 70s and 80s American Express advertising campaign.

Startup News
Chinese and Indian robots battle for Japan's logistics money
A voice chatbot startup makes a splash in the hotel industry
TAIGER extends global reach with offices in Dubai & Hong Kong
SoftBank Vision 2 Fund
Why Japan’s $200 billion man is not investing at home
SoftBank incubator steps up investment in Japanese AI
AI in Aviation
Rolls-Royce and DSTA to optimise engine maintenance using AI
Autonomous Vehicles
Driverless shuttle on trial at NUS starts taking passengers
Facial Recognition
In China, QR codes are being replaced by face scans for payments
Digital Readiness
Digital contribution to Malaysia’s GDP set to grow
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