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Nest Cam IQ knows who’s home thanks to Google face tech

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Nest Labs is adding Google’s facial recognition technology to a high-resolution home-security camera, offering a glimpse of a future in which increasingly intelligent, internet-connected computers can see and understand what’s going on in people’s homes.

This photo provided by Nest Labs shows the Nest Cam IQ. Nest Labs is adding Google's facial recognition technology to a high-resolution security camera that will provide a glimpse at the potential for increasingly intelligent, internet-connected computers to see and understand everything going on in people's homes. (Nest Labs via AP)

This photo provided by Nest Labs shows the Nest Cam IQ. Nest Labs is adding Google’s facial recognition technology to a high-resolution security camera that will provide a glimpse at the potential for increasingly intelligent, internet-connected computers to see and understand everything going on in people’s homes. (Nest Labs via AP)

The Nest Cam IQ, unveiled Wednesday, will be Nest’s first device to draw upon the same human-like skills that Google has been programming into its computers — for instance, to identify people in images via its widely used photo app. Facebook deploys similar technology to automatically recognize and recommend tags of people in photos posted on its social network.

Nest can tap into Google’s expertise in artificial intelligence because both companies are owned by the same parent company, Alphabet Inc.

With the new feature, you could program the camera to recognize a child, friend or neighbor, after which it will send you notifications about that person being in the home.

Nest isn’t saying much about other potential uses down the road, though one can imagine the camera recognizing when grandparents are visiting and notifying Nest’s internet-connected thermostat to adjust the temperature to what they prefer. Or it might be trained to keep a close eye on the kids when they are home after school to monitor their activities and send alerts when they’re doing something besides a list of approved activities.

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