A new app called Fetch! uses artificial intelligence to analyze and identify a dog by its breed using a smartphone camera or photo library. The app, released through Microsoft Garage, is available for free in the App Store and through What-Dog.net.
The app allows users to use an existing image of a dog or to take an image with the app's camera mode, which also plays noises to help dogs look directly at the camera. Once a user has selected an image, the app analyzes the image to determine the breed.
However, the app is more than just a fun toy as it also provides information on the breeds. After analyzing a dog, users get a short description of the breed, a match percentage of the breed, and share options. Clicking on the match percentage displays any other breeds that the app thinks could be a possibility. The arrow button on the match result takes users to the breed page within the app, where a short description and history of the breed are displayed. There is also an option to view Bing search results for that breed.
"It's about bringing artificial intelligence to the canine world," Mitch Goldberg, development director at Microsoft Research said. "Computers have been able to hear and talk, and now they can see."
"Anybody can benefit from understanding what a particular breed is all about and what kind of lifestyle would be best suited for that breed."
In addition to identifying dogs, the app will also analyze images of humans (there is a selfie option) and identify which breed they would be.
"It's a lot of fun to be able to classify so many different dog breeds correctly," Goldberg said. "But it's also fun to see what someone's inner dog is."
Fetch! plans to add more breeds and encourages users to leave feedback and report inaccuracies.
"With all artificial intelligence, it's continuously improving. So the more people who use it and give feedback, the better it will become."