Google launches “new” reverse-image search engine—three years after a Toronto tech company did it first

Google launches “new” reverse-image search engine—three years after a Toronto tech company did it first

Google v. TinEye (Image: Screen grab from a Google search) 

Three years ago, Leila Boujnane’s Idée Inc. developed an oh-so-cool reverse-image search engine called TinEye. At the time, Boujnane knew she’d created something big. Essentially, TinEye allows users to trace an image to its source and find out whether a modified version or higher-resolution alternative is available. But now, her something is Google’s something—the latest evolution of Google Inc.’s Google Google project—meaning Boujnane’s cutting-edge idea is about to get a heck of a lot bigger, and fast.

The Financial Post has the story:

For many technology startups, the prospect of a technology giant co-opting their creation, building it into their core platform and rolling it out to their millions of existing users is nothing short of a nightmare.

But Ms. Boujnane doesn’t see it that way. Instead, she feels that her company’s strategy of licensing its technology to businesses differentiates it from Google, a consumer search engine.

“Google has put searching by image at the future of search,” she said.

“This is no longer a nice-to-have feature, it is a must-have feature, which will drive mobile commerce and enterprise search. Good for Google. Good for us.”

Could Boujnane’s reaction be more typically Toronto? We think not.

Google muscles in on Canadian startup [Financial Post]