Have you ever had the experience of walking through the mall, spotting a stranger with a hot pair of shoes, and wondered what they were and where you could get them? Wonder no longer, because if you can snap a stealthy picture of those shoes, Pinterest Lens can identify the object and suggest related items that may be of interest to you.

Announced earlier today via the Pinterest blog, the tool is built right into the main Pinterest mobile app. While the natural application could be more commercial in scope, Pinterest Lens can just as easily be used on everyday objects and even the night sky. Take a picture of an apple and you may be presented with pins featuring recipes for apple strudel and candied apples.

Pinterest co-founder Evan Sharp says that this “lets your eyes do the searching.”

Google has been actively working on smarter object recognition for a number of years, something that computers in general have struggled with. It probably wouldn’t be completely fair to say that Pinterest Lens will be 100% accurate every time, it’s certainly a step in that direction.

One example that they give is if you were to take a picture of a wall clock. Pinterest Lens would then scour through all the pins on the social network to see where else that same clock has appeared, giving you a better sense of what that clock would look like if you placed it in your own living room.

The new functionality rolls out in the United States today for both the iOS and Android versions of the Pinterest mobile app.

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