RealNetworks Launches SAFR, a Best-In-Class Facial Recognition Platform
AI Matches Millions of Faces in Real Time

SEATTLE (July 17, 2018) — RealNetworks, Inc. (NASDAQ: RNWK), a leader in digital media software and services, today announced SAFR™, a highly accurate, machine learning facial recognition platform, architected to economically scale with high performance and rapid processing to detect and match millions of faces in real time. Utilizing machine learning, SAFR – Secure Accurate Facial Recognition – is continuously improving efficiency, accuracy, and reach.

SAFR is distinguished from other facial recognition platforms in three ways:

  • World class accuracy — SAFR recognizes faces with proven 99.8 percent accuracy for Labeled Faces in the Wild (LFW), based on the University of Massachusetts benchmark. In addition, the June results of RealNetworks’ first submission to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), ranked SAFR’s recognition algorithm for “Wild Faces” False Non-Match-Rate (FNMR), as the best of any platform submitted by a United States-based company and as one of the world’s top recognition algorithms. NIST is the premier measurement standards laboratory for the United States.
  • Extraordinary efficiency and flexibility — SAFR works seamlessly with existing IP-based cameras and readily available hardware to recognize people in real time, helping to enhance secure access and surface insights. SAFR supports both cloud and local storage. System integrators and application developers can easily integrate with the SAFR platform through RESTful API’s, an SDK, and dashboard.“The architectural design of SAFR takes a novel approach to facial recognition at scale,” said David Sobeski, former chief technology officer, and senior vice president, Walt Disney Company. “This makes SAFR commercially viable for a wider range of practical real-world applications.”
  • Focus on privacy and socially positive use cases — SAFR encrypts all facial data and images to ensure privacy. When used locally, no personal or facial data is ever transmitted over the Internet. Moreover, RealNetworks is announcing that SAFR is being made available for free to over 100,000 K-12 schools in the United States and Canada (see separate release).“Privacy concerns are paramount in our design thinking,” said Reza Rassool, CTO of RealNetworks. “SAFR can be deployed securely in the cloud or purely on-premises, where all face and event data remains on site. In both cases private data is encrypted in transit and at rest.”

SAFR supports numerous secure access use cases where facial recognition can replace the use of an ID badge, securely automate entry to facilities, trigger notifications, and log events for analytics. SAFR provides facial detection and tracking of many faces in a single camera feed. Each face can be selectively analyzed for age, gender, sentiment, and liveness. Faces are rapidly matched to a database of enrolled faces, returning each identity with a recognition confidence score. SAFR works with off-the-shelf IP cameras and runs on mobile devices and readily available computers.

Lasse Andresen, ForgeRock’s chief technology officer, said, “At ForgeRock, our focus is to enable organizations of all sizes to build trusted digital relationships, and nothing can be more notable than protecting the bond between schools and its students. We congratulate RealNetworks in delivering the SAFR platform and look forward to working together to advance this exciting initiative.”

Building on its legacy and leadership in streaming media—including compression, media delivery, digital rights management, and efficient scalability—RealNetworks’ expertise now extends to AI, machine learning and deep neural networks: the foundation of SAFR.

SAFR for K-12 is being offered for free to K-12 schools in the United States and Canada. SAFR will be made available through a commercially-paid license for other industries. More information on SAFR is available at

About RealNetworks

RealNetworks creates innovative applications and services that make it easy to connect with and enjoy digital media. RealNetworks invented the streaming media category and continues to connect consumers with their digital media both directly and through partners, aiming to support every network, device, media type and social network. Find RealNetworks’ corporate information at

RealNetworks® and the company’s respective logos are trademarks, registered trademarks, or service marks of RealNetworks, Inc. Other products and company names mentioned are the trademarks of their respective owners.

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