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Google today launched Lens, a service that uses AI to quickly recognize objects, businesses, and other things in the world.
The news was announced onstage during the keynote address at I/O, Google’s annual developer conference, by CEO Sundar Pichai.
“If you run into something and want to know what it is — say, a flower — you can point your phone at it and find out what it is,” Pichai said.
In a demonstration, Pichai showed that Lens will also be able to identify businesses and read the label on your router and connect you automatically.
The service will initially be available via Google Assistant or Google Photos before being made available through other Google software, he said.
Should Google Lens be able to recognize clothing and other items for sale, it will immediately be in competition with Pinterest Lens and Amazon’s computer vision ecommerce search engine. Both are available for visual search in the new Samsung Galaxy S8.