Google is known for innovations. Be it Google doodles or Google play, the firm is always bringing something new to people. And one of the lesser known apps is Google Goggles. Though it was launched back in 2010, not many in India know about the application.

Google Goggles is an image recognition application. This application, which is available on Apple store and Google play for free, uses images taken from handheld devices to search for related information.

The application scans virtually everything, from face to business cards, but the quality and type of result depends upon the content being scanned. The application can be used for scanning various labels and landmarks without using text-based search, thus, increasing the level of visual search quality and results.

The application can identify product bar codes, labels and text that allows users to search and save information of related data for real-time or future reference and use. One of the more interesting features of the application is its ability to read the printed text through optical character recognition (OCR). Through this, the app not only reads the text, but in some cases, can show the translations too.

Google Goggles
Google Goggles


In order to know the application more, we downloaded and went through did a thorough check-up. Here is an example of how Google Goggle works.

  1. Once you open the application, you see a page similar to the snapshot. You have an option of either to click a picture or use images from the gallery. We are using the book on Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson here (image 1).
  2.  Scan the object you want to know more about. In this case, we scanned a copy of Steve jobs’ biography (image 2).
  3.  The application scans the click for image and text, and finds parts of the image that would help it search for more info. (image 3).
  4.  Once the scans are done, you see options at the bottom of the screen. Here, we got results for the book, image and text (image 3).
  5.  Choose what information you want, and enjoy.

Things to keep in mind while working around Goggles:

  1. Works well around well-known landmarks, images,paintings, etc. but try not to scan random people and know more about them. It only searches what is indexed on Goggle search.
  2. It WILL give an option of saving text to contacts, thus, you can use for saving details from contact cards directly on phone.
  3. Helps you get information about a product with a link of where to buy online.
  4. Scan logos, etc. to know more about brands
  5. Scans bar codes and gives you info about the product.
  6. Can solve Sudoku puzzles*. (amused yet?)

 *You can get the solution of Sudoku if an answer is available online

**Please note that the only reason I’ve used the Steve jobs’ biography is because that’s what I am reading at the moment.

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