Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Vodafone Launches Otello, An Image Search For Mobile Phones

Images are search engine's new keywords.

Last week Physical World Connection player SnapTell launched their image recognition application for the mobile.

Vodafone Shows Image Search for Mobile Phones (NY Times)
image recognition
At the Cebit trade show in Germany, Vodafone is demonstrating Otello, a search engine that uses images as input.

Instead of entering a word or phrase users send pictures via MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) from their mobile phones.

The picture can be anything from a historical building to a CD cover, according to Vodafone. Otello then returns information relevant to the picture to the mobile phone, just like a normal search engine.

Vodafone's reasoning behind image search is that it's more convenient to take a picture than to enter search terms with a phone that lacks a normal keyboard.

Starting Monday Vodafone is conducting a trial with German paper Bild. Readers can find out more about specially-marked articles by photographing them with their mobile phone camera and sending the image to Bild.

Anyone know who could open their enormous database of images for this service?

Think of the possibilities if any image could direct a mobile user to a specific URL.

1 comment:

Dean Collins said...

Do you know if there is any 'physical' markings to identify this is a SnapTell image?

How does a user know where/what to focus on?
Or what to expect from the resulting experience?

Dean Collins