If you thought the Amazon barcode scanning apps were cool, you’ll be blown away by the Flow iPhone app, as this provides a visual search engine for your holiday shopping.
The Flow app is produced by A9, a subsidiary of Amazon, and it allows you to point your iPhone at a DVD, book or CD cover and it will use augmented reality to overlay all the information Amazon knows about the product, including the price, related material and even things like movie trailers. You’ll be able to e-mail this product out, share it on Facebook or Twitter or even see where this product is on a map.
You can sign in with your Amazon account and if you’re a Prime member like I am, you’re just a few seconds from being able to have the app recognize something and then having it being sent to your house. Along with recognizing covers, the Flow iOS app also will scan barcodes.
“This is our first step towards integrating product search technology with augmented reality,” said Bill Stasior, president of A9.com, in a prepared statement. “The integration of a live camera display, graphical overlays, and visual recognition technology creates a seamless experience for a customer looking to discover information about objects in their physical surroundings.”
Beyond making for a cool demo to your friends, the Flow iPhone app could come in handy if you’re out and about shopping for gifts. I don’t know about you but I still like to hit retail stores but it does pain me to buy many things if I know that it’s significantly cheaper on Amazon. This app will allow me to browse the store, compare prices easily and then decide if having that product immediately is worth whatever premium I’m paying.
The free Flow app can be downloaded from the App Store and check out our demonstration video below for a taste of what it can do in the real world.