News & Blog

Facebook Moments. You've Been Recognised!

By Francis West on 11th May 2016

Facial recognition has come to Facebook in the EU and Canada in the form of an app for its photo sharing ‘Moments’ program.

Even though Moments was released last year, challenges including local data privacy rules and the need for some program modifications have hampered a full and uninterrupted rollout, this clever vehicle for easy photo sharing is now here.

What Does It Do?

Facebook’s ‘Moments’ is an app similar to Google Photos or Whatsapp that allows you to group together your photos that feature the same friend or friends, and then simplifies the process of sharing the photos with them if they have installed the same app.

Moments scans your photos using facial recognition, and when it finds ‘familiar’ faces you can sync them to the subject of the photo. If your friends also have the Moments app they can see the photos added to their own synced collection (or get notified via Facebook that Moments photos are waiting for them).

The Moments app builds photo albums and slideshows featuring you and your tagged friends that can be searched and scrolled through, and renamed. The slideshows can be shared with your friends, to their Facebook wall and elsewhere. The Moments app is intended to work best by sharing photos with the closest 10 or so people to you.

The original version of Moments drew upon Facebook’s database to automatically tag photos with people’s names.


One aspect of Moments that needed altering was the fact that it didn’t comply with the EU and Canada data protection requirement of giving people a way to opt out of the process. This has now been rectified as app now links together photos of similar-looking faces but asks the user to identify who they are.


The signs so far are that Moments is proving very popular and according to Facebook 600 million pictures have been shared via the app to date.

What Does This Mean For Your Business?

In an increasingly digitalised business environment, pictures relating to your products and services, company activities, and stakeholders of the company play an important role in communication and marketing e.g. through distribution via various social media, on the website, or internally.

Apps like these can make sure that you not only get access to all of the photos that your friends / colleagues take of you but that they provide a time saving (cost saving) and easy way to share them. Keeping up with the very technical trends like these apps could also provide opportunities for reaching and engaging with specific target markets.