Coronavirus Effect: China’s Facial Recognition Obstructed By Face Masks


Coronavirus outbreak has affected the Chinese population on a large scale. A total number of 31,472 cases have been confirmed and 638 people have died due to coronavirus effect.

Face masks are now compulsory in two provinces of China including Wuhan, where the virus originated. The Chinese government has ordered the masses to wear masks while going outdoors due to coronavirus.

As a majority of China is advised to wear masks permanently, people are experiencing issues with facial recognition technology. It is a part of daily routine in China for activities such as transactions, accessing mobile phones, condominium doors, and bank accounts.

As reported by Abacus, a lot of complaints emerged on the Chinese blogging platform Weibo in which people expressed their frustration by saying that they want to throw their phones away as it opens with a face lock. People are also saying that at this point in time, fingerprint payment is serving as a better option.

The maximum number of complaints are about unlocking mobile devices via facial recognition. As reported by Quartz, Apple has said that a view of the user’s eyes, mouth and nose is needed for the faceID to work properly.

Meanwhile, Huawei also mentioned that it was working on a feature that partially recognizes the face to unlock the phone. However, Huawei said that it has dropped the plan because partial recognition can trigger security issues.

Bruce Lee, Huawei vice president, said that only eyes and head are not enough to allow face unlock as it will raise major security concerns. He concluded his statement by saying that they have discarded the idea of launching facial unlock for scarfed or masked users.


Nishit Raghuwanshi

Nishit Raghuwanshi

A Journalism grad from Lucknow who loves writing tech news. Interested in the latest smartphones, apps, mobile gaming, and general tech. When he’s not busy covering tech developments, you can find him writing or performing rap somewhere in Delhi.
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