How many times have you wanted to search the internet for something you didn’t know the name of? It’s a common problem that Microsoft helps solve with AI features included in its search engine, Bing. Visual Search allows users to replace text queries with images for more nuanced results and it’s now available on your smartphone.
How does visual search work?
Bing has indexed billions of images posted on the internet and most of them have text descriptions of some sort. This has made it possible for Microsoft to create programs that look for similarities in image contents and labels to create computer-generated definitions of everyday objects. So if you were to take a photo of the White House and upload it to Bing, the search engine could tell you what it is without any human input.
Although it may seem like little more than a novelty, Visual Search makes it much easier for eCommerce shoppers to find niche products. Bing can help people identify hard-to-name items and suggest stores that sell them, such as “slip joint pliers” at a local hardware shop or “gaucho pants” at an online clothing retailer.
In June, Microsoft announced that Visual Search is now available within Bing’s iOS and Android apps, as well as Android’s Microsoft Launcher. Just open the app, tap the camera button and take a photo from your phone or choose an image from the gallery. If you’d like to narrow your search, tap the magnifying glass button and crop your image to highlight specific objects within the photo.
In the near future, Visual Search will be added to Microsoft’s Edge browser and Bing.com. It’s a useful feature for finding what you need and helping customers do the same. For insight and support related to any of Microsoft’s products, give our experts a call today.