Concept: Israeli startup Preciate has installed face-recognition kiosks at the Azrieli Business Center in Holon, Tel Aviv to reduce the chances of contracting the COVID-19 infection through physical contact. The startup aims to streamline the ordering and payment process in quick-service restaurants (QSRs) and fast-food stores.

Nature of Disruption: Preciate offers customer recognition and personalization solutions that leverage proprietary facial recognition and personalization technology. It comprises a self-service kiosk and ‘Pay by Face’ system, enabling users to pay in brick-and-mortar locations using facial recognition, without having to carry their wallet or cell phone. To sign up, customers need to use one selfie taken using a personal phone and fill in required personal details, consent, and enter payment options, (if want) by clicking a link shared by the QSR and fast-food store. Immediately after registration, all personal information is deleted and only a vector that represents the user’s face is retained. After registration, customers must scan their faces before entering the eatery premises. The self-service kiosks recognize returning customers and give them a personal experience based on their purchase history. The startup claims its system delivers accuracy up to 99.8%, detects frauds about forged documents, and requires less than a second to identify an individual.

Outlook: QSRs are changing the way restaurants use automation to make it easier to place and customize orders without putting a strain on the employees or forcing management to hire additional people to keep up with rising customer turnover. Additionally, as there is no contact required for facial recognition unlike with fingerprinting or other security measures, facial recognition offers a quick, automatic, and seamless verification experience. Leveraging these benefits, Preciate has rolled out a face-recognition kiosk to offer a personalized service to customers, thereby retaining existing and acquiring new customers. The startup has planned to introduce the system to a few new restaurant chains in Tel Aviv and the US soon. Besides the hospitality sector, the self-service kiosk can be implemented across retail verticals, including stadiums, theaters, apparel, grocery stores, cosmetics, and hotels.