Standing in the street wondering what that monument you’re looking at is? Or maybe looking at a cookie-cutter Italian restaurant and wondering what the local, unique Italian eatery might be? Google can answer that. If you have your Android phone ready, that is.
Google Goggles is a beta app from Google Labs that lets you take photos with your Android and submit them for visual searching with Google. The app works by analyzing the photo and comparing it to other pictures in the Google database, hunting for results. With landmarks, logos, books, and so forth, it works great. So to answer the two questions above, Google Goggles will probably work.
This lets you search without typing or speaking into your phone for results. Imagine touring the local museum and bringing up informational results with just a photo? Or wondering what kind of car that is you just saw pull into the lot? Google Goggles.
This is definitely a cool app and something that, with time, will probably improve quickly to become more relevant. It’s remarkable enough that an app can take your photo and analyze it to figure out what you’re looking at or for. It’s Google’s answer to the augmented reality that app designers have been working with for the iPhone.
Watch this video for Google’s demonstration of how Google Goggles works, hosted by an engineer who sounds like the Governator and another who sounds like one of those British hosts of a PBS program: