Superfish, a stealthy startup that will eventually let users search by sight, reeled in $5.3 million in second-round financing. The Palo Alto, Calif. company has been in research mode for a couple of years and plans to launch the service in the next several months.
Very little is known about the actual product, though the firm is able to maintain another office in Israel. Paid Content has compared it to Russian visual search engine Quintura, which allows users to navigate to the most relevant search results on a dynamic word map (it just received a substantial sum from several American backers). It could also be like Polar Rose, the Swedish engine that uses facial-recognition and 3D imaging technology to tag photos of people (mainly celebrities), and make them more easily searchable. So far, visual search has been a bigger deal overseas. Along with frontrunner Like.com, Superfish’s unveiling could give the U.S. a toehold.