Our photo libraries have become massive ever since photos became so cheap to take, and easy to store. With photo libraries so large, it’s an entire task to manage them, and keep them in order. To help users, photo managing apps have been getting smarter. Photo apps, whether they’re stock apps on your smartphone or your desktop, or third-party ones, offer a myriad of ways to organize photos. You can sort them by date, location, or occasion. One other popular method for managing photos is to organize them by the people in the photos. Face detection technology is used to identify people in photos and it’s used by Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft. The stock Photos app in Windows 10 can find all photos of a particular person. If you think this is a bit too invasive though, you can disable face detection and recognition.
Disable Face Detection & Recognition
The Photos app doesn’t let you associate a name with a face just yet. If you want to search for photos of particular person, you have to find them in the People tab and the app will find all photos they’re in. You cannot type your own name in the search bar and find photos. This is a little less invasive than how Facebook and Apple do things but still, you might want to disable face detection and recognition, nevertheless.
Open the Photos app and click the more button at the top right next to your profile picture. Select Settings from the menu that opens.
On the app’s settings screen, scroll down to the Viewing and editing section. Look for the ‘People’ switch and turn it off to disable face detection and recognition. The change takes affect immediately.
Windows appears to be the only platform that allows users to enable and disable face detection at their own discretion. Apple and Facebook have both mandated this feature. Any photos you save to your Mac or iPhone, or upload to Facebook are scanned for faces. Facebook is planning to utilize this data for users’ security. If someone uses your photo as their display picture, Facebook will automatically alert you. You can then report the photo or the profile. This is obviously one of the good uses of the feature. Of course, considering how much data Facebook has on a single person, it’s still a little unnerving that you can’t opt-out of it. There’s also the fact that if allowed, you may choose to opt out of this feature but your friends might not thus rending your decision to not use the feature meaningless.