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This article was published on November 29, 2017

Google’s new tech can spot and shame people peeping at your phone

Abhimanyu Ghoshal
Story by

Abhimanyu Ghoshal

Managing Editor

Abhimanyu is TNW's Managing Editor, and is all about personal devices, Asia's tech ecosystem, as well as the intersection of technology and Abhimanyu is TNW's Managing Editor, and is all about personal devices, Asia's tech ecosystem, as well as the intersection of technology and culture. Hit him up on Twitter, or write in: [email protected].

Google researchers Hee Jung Ryu and Florian Schroff are gearing up to present a novel little project that takes advantage of your phone’s front camera and AI to spot people around you who are peeping at your screen, and shame them with a sticker.

As you can see in the clip above, when a person other than you is detected to be looking at your phone, the screen’s contents are quickly hidden, and replaced with a view of what the front camera sees. The peeping tom is then highlighted with a vomit rainbow, similar to the one you’ve seen before on Snapchat.

That might come in handy for people who frequently use their phone in crowded places, such as on subway trains. The researchers claim that their screen protection tech works in a variety of lighting conditions and can spot a person gazing at your phone in 2 milliseconds, thanks to its AI working locally.

The duo will present their work at the Neural Information Processing Systems conference in Long Beach, California. Google hasn’t said anything about plans to bring this functionality to Android.

If you can’t wait until you hear more, you might want to give BlackBerry’s less-powerful solution for Android a try.

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