Brazilian airline Gol trials facial biometrics for boarding

The technology is being tested at Rio de Janeiro’s international airport, allowing passenger verification at the gate in less than a second.
Written by Angelica Mari, Contributing Writer

Brazilian airline Gol has implemented facial biometrics to speed up passenger boarding processes at the international airport in Rio de Janeiro.

Under the trial at one of the gates at Galeão airport, the system on a facial recognition totem compares the captured image with the photo on the passenger's records. Some 1024 facial points are analyzed in less than a second, with 98 percent accuracy.

ID documents are still required as a condition for boarding due to regulations, however, the company says it is moving towards adding more convenience to passengers by eliminating the need to show printed or mobile-based boarding cards at the gate.

The system was developed at Gol Labs, the airline's innovation lab, based on technology provided by FullFace Biometric Solutions. Following the trial, boarding aided by facial recognition should be extended to domestic flights in other Brazilian airports.

Gol had first introduced facial recognition technology to customer journeys in 2017 when it claimed to be the world's first company to enable check-in through the use of "selfies."

According to the airline, the online check-in database should be integrated with the biometric boarding system following the successful completion of the trial.

The Gol service is the first facial biometrics initiative for boarding to be offered in Brazil. In the United States, the technology has been in use for that purpose since 2016.

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