Google Lens

Google Lens is an image recognition mobile app developed by Google. First announced during Google I/O 2017,[1] it is designed to bring up relevant information using visual analysis.

Google Lens
Lens product logo color 720px (2)
Original author(s)Google
Initial releaseOctober 4, 2017
Operating systemAndroid, iOS
Available inEnglish, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Korean


When directing the phone's camera at an object, Google Lens will attempt to identify the object or read labels and text and show relevant search results and information.[2] For example, when pointing the device's camera at a Wi-Fi label containing the network name and password, it will automatically connect to the Wi-Fi source that has been scanned. Lens is also integrated with the Google Photos and Google Assistant apps.[3] The service is similar to Google Goggles, a previous app that functioned similarly but with less capability.[4][5] Lens uses more advanced deep learning routines, similar to other apps like Bixby Vision (for Samsung devices released 2016 and after) and Image Analysis Toolset (available on Google Play); artificial neural networks are used to detect and identify objects, landmarks and to improve optical character recognition (OCR) accuracy.


Google officially launched Google Lens on October 4, 2017 with app previews pre-installed into the Google Pixel 2.[6] In November 2017, the feature began rolling out into the Google Assistant for Pixel and Pixel 2 phones.[7] A preview of Lens has also been implemented into the Google Photos app for Pixel phones.[8] On March 5, 2018 Google officially released Google Lens to Google Photos on non-Pixel phones.[9] Support for Lens in the iOS version of Google Photos was made on March 15, 2018.[10] Beginning in May 2018, Google Lens was made available within Google Assistant on OnePlus devices,[11] as well as being integrated into camera apps of various Android phones.[12] A standalone Google Lens app was made available on Google Play in June 2018. Device support is limited, although it is not clear which devices are not supported or why. It requires Android Marshmallow (6.0) or newer.[13] On December 10, 2018 Google rolled out the Lens visual search feature to the Google app for iOS.[14]


  1. ^ Nieva, Richard (May 18, 2017). "Forget rainbow vomit, Google Lens is AR you can actually use". CNET. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  2. ^ Villas-Boas, Antonio (May 16, 2017). "Google Lens can use your phone's CAMERA to do operations based on virtual analysis, like connecting your phone to a WiFi network". Business Insider. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  3. ^ Townsend, Tess (May 19, 2017). "Google Lens is Google's future". Recode. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  4. ^ Conditt, Jessica (May 17, 2017). "Google Lens is a powerful, AI-driven visual search app". Engadget. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
  5. ^ Dobie, Alex (October 6, 2017). "Google Lens: Everything you need to know". Android Central. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  6. ^ Grigonis, Hillary (October 4, 2017). "Pixel 2 Owners Get the First Glimpse of Google Lens Computer Vision Possibilities". Digital Trends. Retrieved October 13, 2017.
  7. ^ Li, Abner (November 27, 2017). "Google Lens now more widely rolling out in Assistant on Pixel, Pixel 2 [Gallery]". 9to5Google. Retrieved November 29, 2017.
  8. ^ Ong, Thuy (October 24, 2017). "Google Lens starts rolling out to 2016 Pixel phones". The Verge. Retrieved October 25, 2017.
  9. ^ "Google Lens is coming to all Android phones running Google Photos". The Verge. Retrieved 2018-03-06.
  10. ^ Ong, Thuy (March 16, 2018). "Google Lens is now available on iOS". The Verge. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  11. ^ Chawla, Ankit (May 7, 2018). "OnePlus Phones Now Getting Google Lens Feature in Google Assistant". NDTV Retrieved May 8, 2018.
  12. ^ Solsman, Joan (May 8, 2018). "Google integrates into new camera app". CNET. Retrieved May 8, 2018.
  13. ^ Liao, Shannon (June 4, 2018). "Google Lens is now available as a standalone app". The Verge. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  14. ^ Li, Abner (December 10, 2018). "Google Lens visual search now rolling out to Google app for iOS". 9to5Google. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
Crowdsource (app)

Crowdsource, also known as Google Crowdsource, is a crowdsourcing platform developed by Google intended to improve a host of Google services through the user-facing training of different algorithms.

Crowdsource was released for Android on the Google Play store on August 29, 2016, and is also available on the web. Crowdsource includes a variety of short tasks users can complete to improve many of Google's different services. Such tasks include image label verification, sentiment evaluation, and translation validation. By completing these tasks, users provide Google with data to improve services such as Google Maps, Google Translate, and Android. As users complete tasks, they earn achievements including stats, badges, and certificates, which track their progress.

Crowdsource was released quietly on the Google Play store, with no marketing from Google. It received mixed reviews on release, with many reviews stating that its lack of monetary rewards is unusual, as similar platforms, such as Google Opinion Rewards, often reward users with Play Store credits.

Extensible Device Metadata

The Extensible Device Metadata (XDM) specification is an open file format for embedding device-related metadata in JPEG and other common image files without breaking compatibility with ordinary image viewers. The metadata types include: depth map, camera pose, point cloud, lens model, image reliability data, and identifying info about the hardware components. This metadata can be used, for instance, to create depth effects such as a bokeh filter, recreate the exact location and position of the camera when the picture was taken, or create 3D data models of environments or objects.

The format uses XML and is based on the XMP standard. It can support multiple "cameras" (image sources and types) in a single image file, and each can include data about its position and orientation relative to the primary camera. A camera data structure may include an image, depth map, etc. The XDM 1.0 documentation uses JPEG as the basic model, but states that the concepts generally apply to other image-file types supported by XMP, including PNG, TIFF, and GIF.

The XDM specification is developed and maintained by a working group that includes engineers from Intel and Google. The version 1.01 specification is posted at the website; an earlier 1.0 version was posted at the Intel website in late 2015.

XDM builds upon the Depthmap Metadata specification, introduced in 2014 and used in commercial applications including Google Lens Blur and Intel RealSense Depth Enabled Photography (DEP). That original specification was designed only for depth-photography use cases. Due to changes and expansions of the data structure, and the use of different namespaces, the two standards are not compatible. Existing applications that used that older standard will not work with XDM without modifications.

Facial recognition system

A facial recognition system is a technology capable of identifying or verifying a person from a digital image or a video frame from a video source. There are multiple methods in which facial recognition systems work, but in general, they work by comparing selected facial features from given image with faces within a database. It is also described as a Biometric Artificial Intelligence based application that can uniquely identify a person by analysing patterns based on the person's facial textures and shape. While initially a form of computer application, it has seen wider uses in recent times on mobile platforms and in other forms of technology, such as robotics. It is typically used as access control in security systems and can be compared to other biometrics such as fingerprint or eye iris recognition systems. Although the accuracy of facial recognition system as a biometric technology is lower than iris recognition and fingerprint recognition, it is widely adopted due to its contactless and non-invasive process. Recently, it has also become popular as a commercial identification and marketing tool. Other applications include advanced human-computer interaction, video surveillance, automatic indexing of images, and video database, among others.

Google Assistant

Google Assistant is an artificial intelligence-powered virtual assistant developed by Google that is primarily available on mobile and smart home devices. Unlike the company's previous virtual assistant, Google Now, Google Assistant can engage in two-way conversations.

Assistant initially debuted in May 2016 as part of Google's messaging app Allo, and its voice-activated speaker Google Home. After a period of exclusivity on the Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones, it began to be deployed on other Android devices in February 2017, including third-party smartphones and Android Wear (now Wear OS), and was released as a standalone app on the iOS operating system in May 2017. Alongside the announcement of a software development kit in April 2017, the Assistant has been, and is being, further extended to support a large variety of devices, including cars and third party smart home appliances. The functionality of the Assistant can also be enhanced by third-party developers.

In 2017, Google Assistant was installed on more than 400 million devices.Users primarily interact with Google Assistant through natural voice, though keyboard input is also supported. In the same nature and manner as Google Now, the Assistant is able to search the Internet, schedule events and alarms, adjust hardware settings on the user's device, and show information from the user's Google account. Google has also announced that the Assistant will be able to identify objects and gather visual information through the device's camera, and support purchasing products and sending money, as well as identifying songs.

At CES 2018, the first Assistant-powered smart displays (smart speakers with video screens) were announced, with the first one being released in July 2018.

Google Goggles

Google Goggles was an image recognition mobile app developed by Google. It was used for searches based on pictures taken by handheld devices. For example, taking a picture of a famous landmark searches for information about it, or taking a picture of a product's barcode would search for information on the product.

Google I/O

Google I/O (or simply I/O) is an annual developer conference held by Google in Mountain View, California.

I/O was inaugurated in 2008, and is organized by the executive team. "I/O" stands for input/output, as well as the slogan "Innovation in the Open". The event's format is similar to Google Developer Day.

LG G7 ThinQ

The LG G7 ThinQ, commonly just referred to as LG G7, is an Android smartphone developed by LG Electronics as part of the LG G series. It was officially announced on May 2, 2018, after about a week of official leaks by LG. It is the second product from LG that uses the ThinQ branding. The device serves as the successor to the 2017 LG G6.


OxygenOS (Chinese: 氧OS; pinyin: yǎng OS) is a customized version of the Android mobile operating system developed by Chinese smartphone manufacturer OnePlus exclusively for their smartphones. OxygenOS was developed for their overseas market. There is also another version of the OS designed specifically for the Chinese home market called HydrogenOS (Chinese: 氢OS; pinyin: qīng OS).In an interview published 3 September 2016, XDA Developers revealed OnePlus was "actively merging both platforms (OxygenOS and HydrogenOS) into a single cohesive operating system".

Pixel (smartphone)

Pixel and Pixel XL are Android smartphones designed, developed and marketed by Google. They were announced during a press event on October 4, 2016, and serve as the first smartphones in the Google Pixel hardware line, succeeding the Nexus line of smartphones. On October 4, 2017, they were succeeded by the second-generation Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.

The Pixels have an aluminium chassis, with a glass panel on the rear, a USB-C connector, 3.5 mm headphone jack, and a 12.3 megapixel rear-facing camera. At launch, the devices featured certain exclusive software features, including the 7.1 "Nougat" update to the Android operating system, integration with the Google Assistant intelligent personal assistant, live technical support services, and unlimited full-resolution Google Photos backup for the life of the device.

The Pixels received mixed reviews. They were called "the best Android phones you can buy" and received praise for camera quality and performance. However, they were criticised for their high prices and lack of waterproofing, and some critics noted design similarities to Apple's iPhone. The Pixels have suffered from a variety of issues after release, including excessive optical lens flare in pictures captured through the rear camera, connectivity issues with some mobile data bands, unstable Bluetooth connections, unexpected battery shutdowns, and failing microphones. Google has acknowledged and released fixes for most of the issues.

Pixel 2

Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are Android smartphones designed and developed by HTC and LG respectively, and marketed by Google. They were announced during a Google event on October 4, 2017, as the successors to the Pixel and Pixel XL. They were released on October 19, 2017, and serve as the second set of smartphones in the Google Pixel hardware line. On October 9, 2018, they were succeeded by the third-generation Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL.

Pixel 3

Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are Android smartphones from the Google Pixel product line. The phones were officially announced on October 9, 2018 and then released initially in the United States on October 18, 2018 and other parts of the world on November 1, 2018. They are the successors to the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.


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