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Nokia launches beta of ‘Point & Find’ system for mobile phones, letting consumers scan images for search with their camera phone.

Posted April 3, 2009

Nokia has launched a beta of its new Point & Find system, which lets mobile phone users search for information on an object by looking at it with their handset camera.

While the service could eventually let consumers scan barcodes, at the moment Point & Find is focused on movies.

Philipp Schloter, Nokia’s general manager for Point & Find, explained: “Simply by pointing their camera phone at a poster for a new movie, people can watch the trailer, read reviews, and find the closest cinema where it is playing.”

Other uses suggested by Nokia include scanning barcodes for prices, looking at items for sale and being sent more details on where to shop or coupons, or eyeing objects in a museum and being sent multimedia information about it.

The open platform system uses the camera to look at images, GPS positioning to decide where it is, and the internet to search though a database of tagged objects. When an image is recognized, links to content – such as film times or prices – are sent back to the user.

Nokia doesn’t just want consumer feedback, but is looking to hear from businesses about their ideas for the tech – click here for the Point & Find business site. It’s already being used by the Body Worlds exhibition at the O2 in London, so pointing the camera of a Point & Find phone at related advertising should bring up data on the show.

The service can currently be downloaded in the US and the UK, on selected handsets. The phones supported by the current beta are the Nokia N82, N95, E66, N81, N76, E51, 6290, 6124 Classic, 6121 Classic, 6110 Navigator, and the 5700 Xpress Music.