Piccadilly Circus billboard ads use facial recognition technology to respond to passers by

  • Posted 7 months Ago

London’s famous Piccadilly Circus billboard has finally been turned back on today (26 October) following a nine-month refurbishment.

Dubbed "Piccadilly Lights", the billboard is now actually one giant screen and holds the record as Europe’s largest single digital screen. It also has cameras integrated within it using facial recognition technology than can detect the age, gender and mood of the millions of passers by. The billboard then reacts to that data to display ads accordingly.

Landsec, the owner of Piccadilly Lights, has commented that the billboard doesn't collect any personal data of passers by and cannot recognise individuals, but it can react to real-time factors "such as the weather or the colour of cars".

The technology can also detect the make and model of cars driving near the billboard, triggering ads specific to certain vehicles as they pass by.

A single brand is set to take over the entire screen every 10 minutes for a 30 second ad, with Coca-Cola, Samsung, Hyundai, L’Oreal Paris, eBay, Hunter and Stella McCartney are already signed up to use the space.

Read more about the billboard at piccadillylights.co.uk.