unnamed (1)

Update: Both Google and Word Lens declined to comment on the details of the future of the app or acquisition, other than to confirm an acquisition had occurred.

Makers of the exceptionally popular AR translation app Word Lens, Quest Visual, have been acquired by Google, according to the company's website. Quest's tech will be merged into Google's Translate products.

The statement from the company is as follows:

With Word Lens, we've seen the beginnings of what's possible when we harness the power of mobile devices to "see the world in your language."

By joining Google, we can incorporate Quest Visual's technology into Google Translate's broad language coverage and translation capabilities in the future.

As a thank you to everybody who supported us on our journey, we've made both the app and the language packs free to download for a limited time while we transition to Google.

We're looking forward to continuing our work at Google - stay tuned!

While Quest doesn't come right out and say it, the company is pretty strongly implying that the Word Lens app will cease to be at some future point. It's not clear if that future point is when the free promotion ends, or once integration with Google Translate is complete. We've reached out to them for clarification on this matter.

In the meantime, free Word Lens language packs! Go go go!

David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • Dutchy

    if you cant beat em, buy em lol

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    Hot damn, now this app needs to become a part of Google Now

    • remister

      Only if they bring back the camera function for Google now.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      It's becoming a part of Translate. Google has that thing, you know.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Why not both?

    • CyberPunk

      Oh yeah. I can see that. Like how the voice command "scan a barcode" opens the camera for scanning, "translate a sign" to launch real-time translating using the camera viewfinder would be cool in Google Now.

      • http://shanked.me/ Shank

        That feature is no longer there.

  • remister

    Google Goggles making a comeback or what?

    • David Thoren

      Most likely will be integrated into Translate. Translate already does image translations, but it's not on the fly like Word Lens.

    • theunknown

      Google Glass - Apart from Translate, this will be a more apt use case.

  • Andre
  • Mark Curtis

    A good thing about Word Less is that you didn't need an internet connection. Given Google, I wonder if this will still be the case.

    • dave

      Google have started to roll out offline languages for speech recognition so hopefully they'll continue the offline Word Lens translations too.

    • David Thoren

      Translate doesn't require an internet connection if you have downloaded the language pack. Not sure about its existing image translation.. that may or may not, I haven't tried yet.

  • https://www.youtube.com/user/MAT0R0 ℳατoгo Ẕεɭɨρħ

    I had this app on my wishlist for a long time. That is pretty cool that it became unexpectedly free.
    I've tried the app, and it's not too shabby. Although, I would of liked to take a snapshot of a whole entire page worth of text instead of it picking up and reading several sentences at a time. I was hoping to use this app to practice german when reading one of my books. Eh well. Can't beat free.

  • Jeune Sekwa

    Ok Glass, translate...

  • sam tole

    The rate at which acquisitions are being done these days is too damn high. Soon we'll have less than ten tech companies owning everything. I for one think some of these acquisitions are slowing down a lot of progress globally.

  • mark boyle

    I owned the app since it's been available and rarely used it. It's cooler in concept than in actual usage. It seemed buggy in picking up words

  • MxY

    Not that much time ago Apple used this app in its ad. You mad now, Apple?

  • Asphyx

    I guess we can expect a Google Translate update with those features at some point.