NEC is in the process of developing a smartphone imaging software it calls Gaziru, which can identify objects by comparing pictures taken with a smartphone against a dictionary of image stored in the cloud. Gaziru is similar to Google Goggles or Bing Vision, where a user simply snaps a picture of just about any object — from food to architecture — and it will display a readout of as much relevant information as it can find.

Even though cloud-based image processing presumably allows for a larger image dictionary, NEC also stated that it is investigating methods that could process images directly from a smartphone. NEC lists several potential uses for Gaziru, like finding the name of something you've never seen before or looking up a manual for a device simply by taking a picture of it. Gaziru could also be positioned as a marketing and trend analysis tool, where a user would snap an image of any object and be given a listen of related products and services. Gaziru is supposed to come online this month, so we shouldn't have much longer to wait until we see an official product from NEC, or even a third party licensee.