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Facebook adding facial recognition to photo tagging: Whose face is this?

Facebook has announced it will change the way you tag photos by spotting faces in your pics and prompting you: "Whose face is this?"

You've just come back from Glastonbury. You've taken a brilliant photo and you want everyone to see it. But now you have to tag 50,000 of your closest friends, one by one, clicking on their sunburnt faces and typing in their names. Putting on the blinking festival would be less work. With wonderful timing though, Facebook has announced it will soon remove one of those stages by spotting faces in your photos and prompting you: "Whose face is this?"

The new feature uses technology common to digital cameras, according to a blog post by Facebook's product manager for photos, Sam Odio. You see every face surrounded by a rectangle and a box for you to type their name (pictured above). It doesn't recognise who the person is, which some cameras can now do, just that a face is present.

"Ninety-nine percent of people using Facebook have uploaded at least one photo," Odio revealed. "More than 100 million photos are uploaded every day." The focus, therefore, is to make the experience quicker and easier. "Stay tuned for future posts about other work on browsing, uploading and tagging," Odio promised.

The update is being tested at the moment -- if you see the feature, let us know how well it works and whether it's a marked improvement. What other new features would you like to see?

In other Facebook news, the company seems to have recovered very quickly from the privacy storm of just a few months ago. The brand's bouncebackability outperformed every other US company in June, according to research by YouGov. Caroline McCarthy has the full story at CNET News: Study: Facebook's tarnished brand has bounced back.