What is Azure AI Vision?


As of July 2023, Azure AI services encompass all of what were previously known as Cognitive Services and Azure Applied AI Services. There are no changes to pricing. The names Cognitive Services and Azure Applied AI continue to be used in Azure billing, cost analysis, price list, and price APIs. There are no breaking changes to application programming interfaces (APIs) or SDKs.

Azure's Azure AI Vision service gives you access to advanced algorithms that process images and return information based on the visual features you're interested in.

Service Description
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) The Optical Character Recognition (OCR) service extracts text from images. You can use the new Read API to extract printed and handwritten text from photos and documents. It uses deep-learning-based models and works with text on various surfaces and backgrounds. These include business documents, invoices, receipts, posters, business cards, letters, and whiteboards. The OCR APIs support extracting printed text in several languages. Follow the OCR quickstart to get started.
Image Analysis The Image Analysis service extracts many visual features from images, such as objects, faces, adult content, and auto-generated text descriptions. Follow the Image Analysis quickstart to get started.
Face The Face service provides AI algorithms that detect, recognize, and analyze human faces in images. Facial recognition software is important in many different scenarios, such as identification, touchless access control, and face blurring for privacy. Follow the Face quickstart to get started.
Video Analysis Video Analysis includes video-related features like Spatial Analysis and Video Retrieval. Spatial Analysis analyzes the presence and movement of people on a video feed and produces events that other systems can respond to. Install the Spatial Analysis container to get started. Video Retrieval lets you create an index of videos that you can search with natural language.

Azure AI Vision for digital asset management

Azure AI Vision can power many digital asset management (DAM) scenarios. DAM is the business process of organizing, storing, and retrieving rich media assets and managing digital rights and permissions. For example, a company may want to group and identify images based on visible logos, faces, objects, colors, and so on. Or, you might want to automatically generate captions for images and attach keywords so they're searchable. For an all-in-one DAM solution using Azure AI services, Azure AI Search, and intelligent reporting, see the Knowledge Mining Solution Accelerator Guide on GitHub. For other DAM examples, see the Azure AI Vision Solution Templates repository.

Getting started

Use Vision Studio to try out Azure AI Vision features quickly in your web browser.

To get started building Azure AI Vision into your app, follow a quickstart.

Image requirements

Azure AI Vision can analyze images that meet the following requirements:

  • The image must be presented in JPEG, PNG, GIF, or BMP format
  • The file size of the image must be less than 4 megabytes (MB)
  • The dimensions of the image must be greater than 50 x 50 pixels
    • For the Read API, the dimensions of the image must be between 50 x 50 and 10,000 x 10,000 pixels.

Data privacy and security

As with all of the Azure AI services, developers using the Azure AI Vision service should be aware of Microsoft's policies on customer data. See the Azure AI services page on the Microsoft Trust Center to learn more.

Next steps

Follow a quickstart to implement and run a service in your preferred development language.