Jaguar Land Rover Patents Facial Recognition Locking Technology

A selfie to unlock your car? Not quite, but your smiling face may be the way to get into a Jaguar or Land Rover very soon.

According to a recently published patent filed by the British automaker, which in turn is owned by India's Tata Motors, facial recognition technology would be installed to give drivers access to their cars.

The vehicle could have two cameras on each side that are angled so it can detect when someone is approaching from either the front or back. The cameras will then capture photos and take videos simultaneously when someone is walking towards or just standing by the car. If the face of the owner that is saved on the computer matches, then it will unlock the car for them.

While on the surface, this looks like a purely time-saving application, think about what facial recognition software could do for motorists, particularly when paired with autonomous driving. If harnessed properly, facial recognition software could pick up driver’s facial cues and adjust accordingly. What if a car was able to recognize if a driver was falling asleep at the wheel, and pull the car over for them? Or pick up on the fact that they’re texting and driving, and slow the car to a stop? How about noticing small, yet detectable facial differences that could prevent a car from being started by a drunk driver? The possibilities are endless.

Like so many other patents, the immediate use of this Jaguar Land Rover invention is just the tip of the iceberg.