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Google Aquires Footwear Recognition Startup Moodstocks

Google is expanding its efforts at object recognition technology, and is pulling from the footwear tech community to help.

Moodstocks, the Paris-based tech startup, announced that it has signed a deal to become a part of Google, with the acquisition expected to be completed within a few weeks. After introducing on-device image recognition in 2012, Moodstocks had developed new algorithms for machine learning that enabled the recognition of objects via smartphone cameras.

Described as the “Shazam for sneakers,” Moodstocks allowed subscribers to find footwear by matching images captured via smartphone cameras to its database of more than 20,000 shoes. In recent years, the company had begun expanding into object recognition beyond the realm of footwear, likely piquing Google’s interest.

“Today, we’re thrilled to announce that we’ve reached an agreement to join forces with Google in order to deploy our work at scale,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Ever since we started Moodstocks, our dream has been to give eyes to machines by turning cameras into smart sensors able to make sense of their surroundings… Our focus will be to build great image recognition tools within Google.”

Moodstocks announced it would be discontinuing its image recognition services in light of the deal, but that current paying customers would get to use the API until the end of their subscriptions.