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Google Goggles was an image recognition mobile app developed by Google that enabled users to take photos and search online for information about objects or places within them. The application used computer vision technology to analyse images and identify landmarks, text and other visual data.
Google Goggles first debuted in 2009 for Android devices and then for iOS devices in 2010. At its introduction, the app was considered revolutionary due to its innovative use of computer vision that could quickly identify objects, landmarks and visual data with high degrees of accuracy. After its debut for iOS devices in 2010, critical acclaim followed this groundbreaking release as critics celebrated Google Goggles as a pioneering visual search app.
Google Goggles quickly evolved, adding features that made it worthwhile for shopping and networking, such as recognizing barcodes, QR codes and business cards. Unfortunately, however, some critics pointed out its limitations, including the inability to recognize specific objects and dependency on an internet connection for information searches.
Google announced in 2014 that it would discontinue Google Goggles as a standalone app and integrate its features into other Google products like Google Lens and Photos. Google Lens provides more advanced visual search using machine learning and augmented reality for more in-depth information about objects and landmarks. At the same time, Google Photos utilizes image recognition technology to organize and categorize users' photos.
Google Goggles played an essential part in shaping mobile visual search, inspiring the creation of other tools such as Google Lens, Pinterest Lens and Amazon's visual search feature. So even after its discontinuation, its legacy can still be seen through its popularity - such as Amazon's visual search feature or Pinterest Lens.
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