updated 11:55 am EST, Wed January 28, 2009
NEC Eye Flavor ad board
NEC Japan has been selling its Eye Flavor digital signage board in Japan since December and what makes the device unique is its built-in camera with face recognition technology. The board will scan a passersby face before he or she gets to the board and, by estimating his or her age range or even sex, will display ad content most suitable for these results.
The Eye Flavor will then keeps stats of a person's response to particular ads, saving information such as whether the ad was merely glanced at, totally ignored or studied for an extended period of time to gauges its effectiveness and pass that information along to the advertisers themselves.
Eye Flavor includes a large LCD display, camera, streaming controller and effectiveness analysis software. NEC has tested the device at a conference center for 21 days last October, measuring stats such as the number of viewers, viewing duration and the gender and approximate age of the viewers. The Eye Flavor has started selling in Japan in December, with pricing starting at the equivalent of about $22,400; hoever, before the Eye Flavor can be sold in other markets, it needs new software, as it can only recognize Japanese faces so far.