AXS plans to deploy biometric palm scanning in Red Rocks, Colorado


AXS has announced that it will deploy a biometric ticketing system at Red Rocks, the iconic location in the mountains outside of Denver. The system, powered by Amazon One’s palm recognition technology, will be immediately added to Red Rocks entry systems, with plans to deploy the scanning systems to other locations in the future.

The palm scan will be optional at first – AXS plans to offer dedicated terminals to consumers who choose to use the system, but retains its other gate ticketing options, at least for now.

“We are proud to work with Amazon to continue to shape the future of ticketing through cutting-edge innovation,” said Bryan Perez, CEO of AXS. “We are also excited to bring Amazon One to our customers and the industry at a time when there is a need for fast, convenient and contactless ticketing solutions. At AXS, we are continually deploying new technologies to develop secure and smarter ticketing offerings that improve the fan experience before, during and after events.

Amazon One is already in use in some Amazon stores, where consumers can grab merchandise and pay for it by scanning their palm upon exiting, removing cashier expenses from the system. Users who wish to register could have their palm scanned before an event, which would link biometrics to their AXS account. From that point on, they could use handheld scanning terminals at company-issued locations, which it says take less than a few seconds to validate, keeping the line moving.

At Red Rocks, there are plans to have a biometric scanning station outside the gate area for those who wish to donate their palm scans to businesses, as well as inside the amphitheater to scan for future use.

“We are excited to be working with AXS to provide fans of Red Rocks Amphitheater and other future venues the ability to participate in events quickly and easily with just their palm using the Amazon One contactless service,” said Dilip Kumar , vice president of physical retail and technology at Amazon. “Fans can now enjoy an easier experience entering the Red Rocks Amphitheater, which gives them more time to settle in and enjoy the show. We can’t wait to hear how fans are enjoying the experience, and we can’t wait to bring it to more places with AXS to benefit spectators even more of the event.

The use of biometric data as part of the ticketing process has been extremely controversial, since companies like Live Nation first considered the idea of ​​facial recognition as part of the site entry process. Both Live Nation and AXS have pledged that they will not use such systems at festivals in reaction to a coordinated campaign against facial recognition technology in 2019. has gained momentum, with a team cadre in Europe expressing hope that “we are using this coronavirus pandemic to change the rules” banning invasive biometric and facial recognition technologies, saying “the coronavirus is a bigger enemy than [any threat to] privacy.”

COVID has already been used as a Trojan horse to force the much-desired shift to digital-only ticketing systems over paper tickets, with companies like Ticketmaster scrambling to rename anti-resale systems like SafeTix turning barcodes into the world. framework of a “safe” covid reopening plan. This despite massive consumer opposition to these systems, which drastically reduce consumer choice and ticket rights over easily transferable paper tickets – and have even found loopholes to force mobile-only tickets into states. like New York where consumers are required to have other options for the tickets they purchase under the law.

Using a palm-based system will likely remove some of the protest that facial recognition brings – this at least alleviates the known issue that facial recognition is much weaker in cases where the identified face is not. not white – but does not solve the primary problem. significant privacy concerns, not to mention issues with consumers’ ticketing rights for the tickets they have paid for.

The release announcing the deployment glosses over privacy concerns, simply stating that “the service is designed to be highly secure” and that it uses custom algorithms to create the unique palm signature. It is less certain how things might turn out if there is bad analysis or data corruption in the system as thousands of people try to enter an event.

The full version announcing the Red Rocks launch of Amazon One Palm Scan from AXS is here


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