Google search is getting eyes and ears, moving beyond typed key words to let people scour the Internet with mobile telephone cameras or spoken words in multiple languages.
Google on Monday unveiled ‘Goggles’ software that lets people search online using pictures taken with cameras in mobile phones based on its Android operating system.
“When you take a mobile phone camera and connect it to the Internet, it becomes an eye,” Google mobile search vice president of engineering Vic Gundotra said while demonstrating Goggles in Mountain View, California. “Google Goggles lets you take a picture of an item and use the picture as the query.”
An experimental version of Goggles will be available for people at Google Labs website. Goggles already recognises books, CD covers, landmarks and more. Search results to include ‘real-time’ data. In a related development, fresh information from blogs, news sites, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and other popular hangouts will appear in Google’s search results more quickly as the company aims to give people a more comprehensive look at what’s happening on the Web.
The feature, unveiled on Monday, represents Google Inc.’s most significant step yet in the field of ‘real-time’ search — a catch phrase for the torrent of information constantly being shared on blogs and the personal pages of social-networking sites.
As those destinations have turned into increasingly popular forums for swapping opinions, offering news tips and highlighting interesting stories, Google, Yahoo Inc. and Microsoft Corp. all have been scrambling to retool their search engines so they reel in and showcase real-time data more rapidly.
Google reached a deal in October to blend Twitter updates, or ‘tweets,’ into its results, but had not explained how its system would work until Monday.