Google Lens

If you’re a user of the Amazon app, you may be familiar with their barcode scanner. As its name implies, this feature allows you to use your phone camera to scan an item’s UPC code and—if that item is available for purchase on Amazon—take you to a page where you can purchase it. This option is incredibly handy (especially if you’re a fan of comparison shopping), but what if you could use image recognition technology to take that whole idea one step beyond?

In today’s video, we’ll discuss Google Lens, a new feature on Google Pixel phones. Google Lens essentially allows you to search for an item online by simply capturing a photo and uploading it to the app. If you like your friend’s shoes, you can use the app to find those shoes on a retail website. If you’re on the fence about trying a new business, you can snap a photo of the storefront and pull up results and reviews with just a few taps of your phone screen.

For years, people have used Google (and other search engines) to find out more about things that they see in the real world. But Google Lens has the potential to make the interaction between online and offline information-gathering even more ubiquitous.