Jeffrey Sharkey has won the Google Developer’s challenge, and $25,000 for his “Scan” Android application. The main purpose of the app is to find pricing and metadata info from anything with a barcode, such as CD’s, books, and other products.
We’ve seen this technology in the past, but nothing that uses the power of Android to accomplish it. The features are quite impressive, and as I’ve always said, it took a platform like Android to really open up the feature-set to make barcode-recognition a mainstream possibility. Here’s some of the features of the new app;
- Automatic barcode recognition using onboard phone camera using ZXing
- Shows CD, DVD, or book cover along with detailed reviews from Amazon.com
- Searches over a dozen stores, both online and brick+mortar
- Highlights brick+mortar stores that are nearby, with option to call the store or get directions
- Links to online storefronts to buy online from the phone
- Track-listing for CDs, along with option to play sample tracks right on phone
- For books, searches local libraries to see if they have a copy
There’s a video demo of the app in action here. The most impressive features are the fact that it will scan local stores, libraries, etc. for the product scanned, and return those results with options to get directions to the nearest store, call them for more details, and more. If you scan a CD, you can listen to a clip with ease, and it even lists brick and mortar stores separately, for if you’re on the go and want to purchase something right then instead of online.
I’ve been waiting to see something like this, and it doesn’t surprise me that it won the developers challenge. It’s an amazing application. If you go here, you can actually listen to the voicemail from Google telling Jeffrey that he’s won. Congrats Jeffrey!