AI Casino Project in Singapore Gone Silent

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A general view of Resort World Sentosa is seen from Mount Faber hill in Singapore. Roslan Rahman/AFP

SenseTime is one of China’s preeminent artificial intelligence companies and their landmark project with Genting’s Resorts World Sentosa was supposed to be groundbreaking. The crux of the ambitious endeavor was to provide artificial intelligence throughout the highbrow resort casino located on the primarily manmade island of Sentosa, off the southern coast of Singapore.

The SenseTime AI would track casino customers throughout their stay in the casino every time they entered the lens of another camera. Facial recognition would ensure that any unwanted or black-listed guests would be reported to security and ultimately escorted from the premises.

Dealers and employees would also be carefully monitored as would their hand movements to prevent theft and collusion with customers. Speaking of customers, the artificial intelligence mechanisms would classify their patrons into various categories depending on which games they played and would tailor marketing programs to them predicated on their preferred interests.

Believe it or not, with a project so intensely technologically advanced, the caliber of the cameras was an issue as they would often be unable to engage the facial recognition features in areas of the casino that were particularly dim.

The resort did announce a new partnership with Canon to replace the old cameras but that was not the only issue SenseTime was having. The uniforms worn by employees made distinguishing them difficult as much of the AI recognition is based on separating the subjects to their distinctive clothing.

Shaun Leong, a partner at the international law firm of Withersworldwide, spoke about the complexities of privacy rights vis a vis, the artificial intelligence tracking mechanisms intended for the casino and throughout the property.

“In theory, casinos could use facial recognition technology, or machine learning functions, to supervise and monitor patrons who are gambling on the floor to catch cheating behavior. That’s quite an interesting use I think, the legalities of which perhaps are still being explored” Leong said.

SenseTime rebutted any concerns in the following statement, “We continuously monitor our data processing collaboration with third parties, and regularly review the content of such collaborations, the scope of the collaboration agreements and the execution of such agreements to ensure compliance with relevant laws and regulations.”

But all of these ambitious plans have met unexpected delays and whether SenseTime will continue to work with Genting’s Resorts World Sentosa on this, all AI, all the time, is uncertain as of this writing. According to an anonymous source who worked on the project, its future at the resort/casino is more than just a bit murky.

The source stated, “SenseTime was very proud of the Genting project. They wanted to do a big announcement with the government and resort, but it keeps getting delayed. Now, it has just gone silent.”

It should be noted that the $4.5 billion expansion that Genting’s Sentosa was undertaking has also been delayed due to the global pandemic and now plans are projected to go forth in 2022. Perhaps as that project lifts off, so too will SenseTime’s AI coverage of the casino and the property reengage. Bookmakers Review will keep you posted.