A pet company is trying to apply the access control technology that is typically reserved for humans to the fuzzier members of someone’s family. To that end, Petvation has unveiled a new smart pet door that uses facial recognition to identify dogs, cats, and any other pet that may want to go in and out of the house.
In practice, the system works exactly like an access control system that might be installed at an office. Owners can register their pet’s faces to the door, and the door will use a 120-degree wide-angle camera to recognize them as they approach. The door will then slide open to allow the animal to pass through. The system also utilizes motion detectors and a pinch sensor to make sure that a pet is through the door before closing. The pinch sensor is accurate enough to pick up objects that are 0.2 inches thick, and prevents tails from getting clipped.
According to Petvation, pet door security is less a matter of fraud or theft (as access control usually is with regards to conventional businesses), and more a matter of pest control. Raccoons, coyotes, and other critters can use a normal pet door. With facial recognition, on the other hand, the door remains closed to any unwanted animals. The company believes that its solution is more humane than alternatives that force pets to wear a smart collar that grants them access when they approach the door.
The Petvation offering will perform a self-diagnostic check after each use, and notify the owners if any sensors are malfunctioning. Owners can also control and monitor the door remotely through a smartphone app. The door itself is powered with a wall plug, and is listed for a retail price of $229.
Of course, Petvation is not the first organization to turn computer vision tools toward pets. Petco Love, Finding Rover, and the New Zealand Companion Animal Register have all created databases of pet images that people can use to run searches for their missing friends.
Source: Yanko Design
June 23, 2022 – by Eric Weiss