Object recognition is a broad word that relates to CV (computer vision) tasks involving recognizing things in digital pictures.

Image classification is the process of automatic classification of a single object in a photograph. Identifying the position of one or more items in a picture and creating a bounding box around their extent is object localization. Object detection combines these two tasks, locating and classifying one or more items in a photograph.

  • Object recognition is a term that usually refers to object detection.

As a result, these three computer vision tasks may be distinguished:

  • Estimate the category or class of an item in a picture using image classification.

Input: A single-object picture, such as a photograph.

The result is a class label.

  • Object Localization: Determine the existence of objects in a picture and use a bounding box to identify their position.

A picture with one or more items, such as a photograph, is used as input.

One or more bounding boxes as an output.

  • Object detection: Find the existence of items in a picture using a bounding box and the kinds or classes of the objects found.

A picture with one or more items, such as a photograph, is used as input.

One or more bounding boxes, as well as a class label for each bounding box

What is object detection?

Object detection is a computer vision approach for identifying and locating things in images and videos. Object detection, in particular, creates bounding boxes around observed items, allowing us to determine where they are in a scene and how they move within it.

Because object detection and picture recognition are frequently confounded, it’s critical to understand the differences.

A picture is labeled using image recognition. The term “cat” is used in a photograph of a cat. The term “cat” is still used in a photograph of two cats. On the other hand, object detection creates a box around each cat with the word “cat” written on it. The model forecasts the location of each object and the label that should be applied. Object detection, in this sense, gives more information about a picture than recognition.

ML and DL object detection

Object identification may be divided into two categories: machine learning-based techniques and deep learning-based approaches.

Computer vision algorithms are employed in more classic ML-based systems to identify groupings of pixels that may belong to an object by looking at various aspects of a picture, such as the color histogram or edges. These characteristics are then entered into a regression model that predicts the object’s position as well as its label.

Deep learning-based techniques, on the other hand, use convolutional neural networks (CNNs) to do end-to-end, unsupervised object recognition, which eliminates the need to define and extract characteristics independently.

Importance of object detection

Object detection is closely related to other comparable computer vision methods like image recognition and image segmentation in that it aids in the comprehension and analysis of situations in photos and video.

However, there are significant distinctions. Image segmentation produces a pixel-level comprehension of a scene’s constituents, whereas image recognition just outputs a class label for each detected item. Object detection is distinguished from these other tasks by its capacity to locate items within an image or video. We may then count and monitor those things as a result of this.

We can see how object detection may be used in a variety of ways based on these important characteristics and its unique capabilities:

  • Counting the crowd
  • Automobiles that drive themselves
  • Surveillance by video
  • Face recognition
  • Detecting anomalies

This isn’t a comprehensive list, but it does include some of the most important ways that object detection is influencing our future.


Object detection’s advantages aren’t confined to programs running on servers or in the cloud.

In reality, object detection models can be made tiny and fast enough to operate directly on mobile and edge devices, opening up a world of possibilities. Using object detection on-device has the potential to thrill consumers in new and lasting ways, all while lowering cloud costs and protecting user data.