Microsoft this week revealed that it is at work on a way to search the Internet using photos captured by cell phone cameras.
So rather than typing in an Internet search query, someone can e-mail Microsoft a photo of what they're searching for. Photo2Search, as Microsoft calls the nascent feature, returns Web pages either with information about the objects in the photo, or sites that contain similar images.
Microsoft is the latest example of how search engines continuously try to expand Internet search's utility, whether by using cell phone text messages to make inquiries as most search engines now allow, or using photos as is the case at Microsoft.
News of Photo2Search comes a few days after Google, which views Microsoft as a chief rival, learned it received a patent for an alternative way to search the Internet using spoken words, rather than written text.