Google Lens, more than just a gimmick!?

So, we have just discovered the Google Lens feature. Which allows you to take a photo and complete an online search to recognise the pictured item without ever having to type a word.  We’ve done many practice runs, taking photos and running searches, trying to disprove its genius to no avail. Download the app here, you won’t be sorry!


Upon further ‘research’ we found that this technology has infinite uses. But what is Google Lens, for those of you who may not know? Well, it’s a smartphone camera app that can ‘read’ and ‘understand’ the information within your images. It can register languages, places, names, clothing, objects and provides intelligent ways to deal with this information.

Some great examples of our ‘research’ are photographing our company logo which threw back the link to our website, result! We have also found out what type of plant we have in the office and we have also identified the value of the objects on our desk. All scientific and completely useless, but at the same time, there is some merit to this type of human/AI interaction.

The most interesting search we completed was taking photos of our colleagues’ shoes and it presented results of where we can purchase them or similar products. This sent our minds whirring with the potential for this technology impacting the Retail and Hospitality industries. This technology could provide invaluable with existing technological driven initiatives.

For example, how cool would it be if you admired someone’s outfit, take a photo and you instantly find similar products if not the same one. The hassle of having to figure out the correct search word that is going to get you’re the desired result is removed. Within a few taps, you can then just pop it in your cart and then complete the purchase.

This new concept could also be included on the back end of existing Augmented Reality foundations to help retailers encourage customer purchasing. Something like Ikea Place where you can see the furniture in your home. Or ASOS Virtual Catwalk of models wearing the clothes can be revisited to encourage you to continue the purchase. This is a great way for marketing teams to convince the ever more cost-conscious consumer by delivering value through experience.

Similarly, in Hospitality, there is already a Google Lens feature advertised to work with menus in restaurants. The app shows you what are the most popular options among users alongside photos and reviews of the dishes.  We can also see this incorporation of AR ingenuities to increased upselling. The Alchemist is already a forerunner in this initiative with their AR cocktail menu – find out more here.

Whether the future of this technology is through smartphones or incorporated into the wearable technology market. With an ever-increasing demand for instant, quick and easy information we can see this type of AI technology being incorporated into the future of many companies’ sales cycles.


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