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The market for artificial intelligence-based tracking tools for seniors continues to expand. AI and facial recognition technology provider CyberLink Corp. this week launched its People Tracker tool, which uses AI to recognize and track the movements of individuals. In particular, it can help find wandering senior living residents who have become disoriented due to Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, company officials said.

The company uses a new approach, said Terry Schulenburg, Vice President of CyberLink. Rather than tracking objects like shirts, pants and hats with machine learning, as many monitoring devices do, People Tracker uses a facial recognition engine to match the shape of the whole person (upper body and lower body) and computer vision to track information about colors, he said.

“It’s data that our system can match and manage very quickly,” Schulenburg explained. “We can also find that person if they decided to duck, crawl or lay down on the ground. Most other systems cannot identify a shirt or pants if I am crawling around on the ground. I need to be upright and walking in a more usual way.”

Schulenburg said that the tracking of shapes keeps customers’ privacy in mind. A recent study noted that 1 in 5 Americans believe that AI used in healthcare violates their privacy.

“Since we’re tracking shapes, we’re not matching against a database, and we have no way of knowing who is being tracked,” he said. “I can [only] identify where they went, and the time that they spend within my camera view.”

While facial recognition matches the face to a person, People Tracker looks for a shape that matches the person they’re trying to find, he adds. If users are enrolled, with consent, in People Tracker’s database, the person can be identified by senior living staff or family members, for example.

Use of AI-powered sensors and monitoring devices is on the rise in senior living communities and nursing homes, and these technologies likely will continue to evolve and become more pervasive, observers believe.