Alibaba Group’s Alipay Starts Facial-Recognition Payments Technology for Commercial Use

Alipay has launched its new facial-recognition payments technology for commercial use, Alibaba Group Holding’s (BABA) Ant Financial Services Group said Friday.

Ant Financial said “Smile to Pay” would be the first service of its type, debuted at a KFC’s new healthy-food concept restaurant called KPRO in Hangzhou, China.

The company said Alipay users can authenticate their payments through a combination of facial scanning and inputting their mobile phone numbers, adding that it plans to expand usage over time.

Alibaba shares were softer in late trade.

By Matthew Robinson