Paravision is shutting down its Ever photo sharing service.
In announcing its plans to shutter the platform, the company attributed the move to “increasing competition over the last several years from Apple and Google’s photo storage products”, which brought about a situation in which “the Ever service is no longer sustainable.”
But, as TechCrunch points out, Ever may also have suffered from controversy that erupted last year, when NBC News reported that the company was using photos uploaded by end users to train a facial recognition system that was in turn being offered for sale to business clients.
The revelation came at a time of intensifying scrutiny over the use of facial recognition for surveillance, especially by police – an issue that remains in the spotlight today. Shortly after the NBC News revelation, Ever AI rebranded as Paravision. It is important to note that Paravision never sold its technology to law enforcement, and does not operate within that sector.
The company remains a major player in the facial recognition space. Just about a month ago, it celebrated a second-place ranking in a National Institute of Standards and Technology Face Recognition Vendor Test focused on the performance of biometric algorithms when subjects are wearing face masks.
In an FAQ about the shutdown posted by the company, it explained that once Ever has been shuttered, “your photos and videos will never be used for any purpose, including improving computer vision capabilities such as face recognition.”
The Ever platform will be shut down, with all user data deleted other than that which Paravision is legally required to retain, at 11:59 p.m. PDT on August 31st.