eBay, the host of a large and varied database of products, is introducing Image Search in its Android and iOS apps. As the name suggests, users will be able to snap photos of products around them, and eBay will find similar looking objects in its large database, and throw up results accordingly.
With Image Search, you will be able to take a photo of something you want to buy – or use an existing photo from your camera roll – and put it into the eBay search bar. The app will then show you listings that match the items you’re looking for. For example, snapping a photo of a mixer grinder or glares, and uploading it on eBay will throw relevant or identical results, depending on the database of eBay.
Another feature announced by eBay is called Find It On eBay. This feature will be exclusive to Android first, and will let you share images from social channels like Facebook, Instagram, or the Internet generally. Once you share the image on eBay, the app will find listings of the item in that image or others like it, and show you results based on it.
These two new features are going to prove to be very useful on eBay, and the company claims that they were introduced using artificial intelligence, deep learning, and computer vision. “When you upload images to run Find It On eBay and Image Search, we use a deep learning model called a convolutional neural network to process the images. The output of the model gives us a representation of the your image that we can use to compare to the images of the live listings on eBay. Then, we rank the items based on visual similarity and use our open-source Kubernetes platform to quickly bring these results to you, wherever you are in the world,” the company explains in its blog post.
eBay has more than 1.1 billion listings, and these features are now being announced after two years of extensive work on them. While there’s no tangible timeline on when these features will arrive, eBay has confirmed that they should launch in fall. As mentioned, Find It On eBay will first arrive on Android, but Image Search will come to both iOS and Android.