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Tokyo Narita to Introduce End-to-end Facial Recognition in 2020

The "One ID" system uses biometric screening for check-in, luggage drop, security and immigration, and boarding

March 22, 2019

Tokyo’s Narita International Airport is planning an automated overhaul of its passenger processing with new facial recognition technology due to be rolled out across its check-in, immigration and boarding procedures starting next year.

The airport aims to introduce a new “One ID” process sometime in spring 2020 that will provide passengers with an end-to-end automated experience using what it describes as “the world’s most advanced facial recognition technology” in an attempt to reduce queuing times.

Passengers’ facial data will be captured at their first point of contact, likely a self-service kiosk, and correlated against passport and check-in data by scanning relevant documents. It will then be possible to go through baggage check-in, security screening, immigration and boarding without having to show your passport or boarding pass a second time.

Initially, the service will only be available to select airlines, namely South Wing and All Nippon Airways (ANA) in Terminal 1, and Japan Airlines in Terminal 2. The service will then be extended to other airlines and terminals in phases.

Narita Airport also has been seeing other technological trials in recent months, including Japan Airlines using voice-recognition and artificial intelligence to speed up check-in procedures.