“What You See is What You Can Get”. Wondering what does this statement mean? This is what Nokia’s ‘Point & Find’ will do. Nokia has announced its plan to start rolling out its augmented reality tool ‘Point & Find’ for mobile phones next year. The US and Europe will be the first to get the new tool in early 2010, while it will be launched in India in 2011.
Just by pointing your smartphone camera towards the product and by clicking, you will have the product details – its price, the nearest retail outlet, its location and distance from where you are standing within few seconds.
Nokia’s new “Point & Find” is the latest service which will enable people on the move to access all relevant information and services on the Net by simply pointing their cellphone camera at real life objects. It recognizes bar codes, integrates GPS positioning technology, and supports category-specific text-entry search. When the handset is pointed at an object, Nokia’s Point & Find uses advanced real-time image processing and recognition technologies to link the user to digital content and services to evaluate the object. Then, by searching through a database of virtually tagged items, the system identifies the object and returns a set of links to associated content and services.
Philipp Schloter, General Manager, Nokia Point & Find said, “We believe that this first Nokia Point & Find-based service for movies will add something special to the cinema experience. Simply by pointing their camera phone at a poster for a new movie, people can watch the trailer, read reviews, and find the closest cinema where it is playing”.
This is just one of the so-called “mixed reality” applications that Nokia is developing at its research center in Tampere, Finland. Nokia runs a trial in San Francisco which will enable real-time flow of traffic data collected from all handsets using GPS which will provide the latest traffic data. Nokia is also working with UK’s Cambridge University on cognitive user interface for mobile phones.
Henri Tirri, global head of Nokia Research Center said, “We are much more an open company now. If in 2000 there was 15% outside influence on research, it’s nearly 50% now. In fact, within Nokia, there has been a 30-40% shift in competency base towards developing such software competency”.