in Startups, Toronto

TinEye publically available

tineyeIdee has removed the “log in” requirement for TinEye today. Registration is now optional for users, but it does provide additional benefits for users including:

  • Social image searches
    Registered users “Share your search results, or post them to your blog. Just cut and paste the search permalink from your browser’s address bar”. It will be interesting to see if there is a social nature to image search results. I’m curious to see how users will use a social search.
  • Search history
    How many times have you closed a browser window just too early? Ctrl+W is just too easy to make a tab disappear. Registered users have the ability to turn on (or off) a search history in TinEye. This makes it easy to both keep the images and the results that you’ve searched for. I wonder if the TinEye searches are refreshed when the page is updated, or if the search results are cached for future access.
  • Early feature access
    We all like being a part of beta testing new features for useful applications. If you want access to the next generation of TinEye features, you need to register.

Curiously, called out in the February 5, 2009 release notes is number 4.

4. Introduced ads. Poor TinEye has to eat!

No surprises here. I keep asking Leila about how exactly she intends to monetize TinEye. One potential opportunity for monetization is through affiliate programs with products like TinEye Mobile which lets you take a photo of album cover art to search for the album on iTunes and the web. You can imagine that this could work for other objects (books, DVDs, etc). I would love the TinEye Book Edition that allows me to snap a picture of a book cover and add it to my GoodReads or Shelfari book shelves. Great to see Leila, Paul and the Idee team building a world class image search and the tools for users.

Register for your TineEye account today.