Google Buys Image Recognition Company Moodstocks

Google will soon make identifying a pair of shoes with the snap of a photo from your phone a lot easier. The search-engine giant has announced that it is purchasing the Paris-based company Moodstocks.

Moodstocks developed technology that turns mobile device cameras into scanners that recognize real-world items such as artwork, shoes, bags and more in real time. In 2015, the company said it indexed more than 15,000 shoes from a shoe e-tailer and could use its visual search to shop sneakers in a Macy’s store.

Dubbing its technology “Shazam for sneakers,” Moodstocks also indexed about 5,000 images from the French Footlocker website, including shoes from brands such as Nike, Timberland, Converse, Vans, Asics and Adidas, and could later visually recognize all the shoes inside the store.


Moodstocks began on-device image recognition in 2012 and has been improving its learning technology over the past few years. The startup created an API —or an application program interface — which allowed anyone to create an app and use its image recognition tools.


Google’s Paris-based headquarters shared the company’s plans to buy the startup on its Google France blog last week. Nearly five years after its launch in France, Google will welcome Moodstocks’ team of engineers and researchers to their French research and development center.

The company’s landing page now features a farewell note to its consumers, stating that their “dream has been to give eyes to machines by turnings cameras into smart sensors able to make sense of their surroundings.”

Google’s acquisition is set to be completed in the next few weeks, while Moodstocks has discontinued offering its company’s services.

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