Search by picture – a new revolution which could help you?

A potential new revolution in the way we search has come to Google, although the bad news for the UK audience is it is currently US only and in a Beta trial version. Still however, it is worth taking a look at and certainly not something to ignore even for the UK market, as it could be a game changer. As with many of these trials, if the concept proves popular and useful, it could well expand and become something which is common place. While the concept is still new, we thought it would be a good idea to take a closer look at it and see how it could benefit you in the future should a full roll out happen.

What is it & how does it work?

Simply put the concept allows the user to take a picture of something, add a word or two ‘tag,’ to it, hit search, then results will be displayed based on the picture and what you have indicated you need in the search tag. Imagine an item of clothing which you like, but you are not keen on the colour and would like to find something in a similar style but a colour you prefer. All you would need to do is simply take a picture, enter your preferred colour as a tag, then results will be displayed. This is one common example that has been touted by developers who have been enlisted with the task of trying to explain more about the concept.

Will this feature have greater uses?

Initially it is thought that the facility will only apply to shopping platforms as described above, although there are bigger plans for this which we would assume would be down to how successful this initial roll out is received by the audience. In the future for example, someone could have a broken item which needs to be repaired. All they would need to do is take a picture, type ‘fix’ and specific details on how to get this product repaired would appear, rather than generic information which may not be helpful if targeted directions are needed. This is one simple way that search by picture has potential ability and capability to revolutionise the way search is conducted, to provide even more accurate and tailored results.

What is the purpose behind this?

Google is constantly looking for ways to remain a leading player in the market. Search by picture is seen as one of the next steps, as it seeks to expand the capability of its artificial intelligence offering. Keeping one step ahead of rivals is key to keeping this leading player status, and it will be very interesting to see how others respond to this, especially if it becomes a permanent feature.

Google does also want to make it’s offering more relevant and reflective of a changing society and their needs. We would guess that Google have calculated that experimenting with a step like this is probably one such way of moving closer to that.

Will it help me?

Before you get too excited (and as already mentioned above,) this is a US only Beta ‘experiment’ at the moment, so you will not see any impact yet. If the UK does eventually get a version of this, the way we search could change forever to become much faster, more ‘on the go,’ and able to deliver more targeted and specific results. It is because of these benefits that we do think this concept will arrive on UK shores, so watch this space! Once it does, we will be sure to fully critique it, giving you all the information you need.

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