Moodstocks, a little-known French startup company dedicated to image recognition software, has been bought by Google, adding yet another important tool for the search giant’s artificial intelligence department.

Moodstocks began in 2012, and in the last two and a half years the company has been devoted to improve their ability to recognize live objects through images captured by the camera on a mobile phone. Moodstocks posted on its website that the tool will be discontinued as a separate app, only to be integrated into Google services.

According to an announcement on the company’s website, Moodstocks’ API and SDK will be discontinued soon. “Our focus will be to build great image recognition tools within Google, but rest assured that current paying Moodstocks customers will be able to use it until the end of their subscription,” the company wrote on its homepage.

The technology Moodstocks uses is called machine learning: the application makes the smartphone see and identify the object in front of the camera, and the software learns from its users, so the more people use it, the more the software learns, which improves the results greatly over time.

Here’s a video where we can see a quick example of what Moodstocks´ technology is capable of:

Google has bought several other French companies, including FlexyCore, made for improving smartphone performance. It has also made several other acquisitions to improve its imaging tech, such as JetPac and PittPatt for facial recognition. Other large tech companies are also acquiring technology companies focused in this area. Earlier this year, Amazon quietly acquired Orbeus, a startup up that also develops image recognition tech.

It’s  unclear if Google plans to launch a new product dedicated to this technology, but in the meantime, several of its existing products, like Google Photos, could start taking advantage of it already.

Kevin Nether