NEC Provides Face Recognition Demo System Utilizing MEC to DOCOMO 5G Open Lab

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NEC Corporation has announced the provision of a facial recognition demo system utilizing Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC), a network architecture concept for next-generation communications, to DOCOMO 5G Open Lab OKINAWA, a 5G technology verification center established in Okinawa prefecture on January 9 and run by NTT DOCOMO, INC.

DOCOMO 5G Open Lab OKINAWA provides charge free technical verification environments, including 5G base stations, for companies and groups participating in the DOCOMO 5G Open Partner Program. The lab aims at creation of new use cases for 5G, promotion of local industries and resolution of social issues in Okinawa. NEC has provided 5G base stations utilizing 4.5 GHz frequency band to this lab.

The demo system utilizing 5G and MEC enables instantaneous face recognition under mobile networks. Therefore, this makes it easier to introduce a temporary face recognition system at an event venue without the need for new cable installation.

Furthermore, it dynamically optimizes the allocation of band frequencies according to need. When a monitoring camera detects a behavior of a person, the demo system expands network bandwidth and images used for face recognition are changed to high-definition images. It sends low-definition images from monitoring cameras in order to reduce the consumption of network bandwidth when persons are not detected.

The demo system consists of NEC’s face recognition AI engine NeoFace, Context-aware Service Controller, which dynamically optimizes the allocation of network resources, as well as NEC’s Image Analysis and Behavior Detection System, which automatically detects behavior in real time, such as intrusions and object abandonment, with a high degree of accuracy. They all are installed on MEC servers which are set closer to terminals. In addition, virtualized Evolved Packet Core (vEPC) is also used.

“NEC will continue to develop and offer a variety of solutions as a top vendor of domestic mobile core networks in the 5G era and to contribute to the expansion of the DOCOMO 5G Open Partner Program, while taking advantage of our experience and knowhow,” said Kazuhiro Tagawa, general manager, Network Solutions Division, NEC Corporation.

This announcement includes part of the results of a research project “Research and development for the achievement of a fifth-generation mobile communication system – Research and development of high-speed and low-power consumption wireless access technology utilizing a super multi element antenna with high-frequency and large bandwidth” commissioned by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.