Need more help with math problems than a calculator can provide? There’s now an app for that.
PhotoMath promises to help solve simple linear equations and other math problems by “reading” questions with the help of your smartphone camera.
But an answer isn’t all you’ll get from this free app. PhotoMath also provides a step-by-step guide of how each problem is solved, a feature that some consumers have lauded as a potentially useful tool for students, parents and educators.
“If you can't figure out the answer and this app can show it to you step-by-step then this is precisely best used by people trying to learn math,” wrote one Redditor on Tuesday.
Another noted that “if you're a parent helping with homework, knowing [the correct answer] and how to get there would be sweet.”
Some netizens, however, have pointed out that the app might prove a little too tempting for students looking to cut corners.
“Wet dream of high school math students, but perhaps not such a good idea?” Kontra, CounterNotions.com’s blogger, wrote on Twitter.
“Equation solving is a learned process. Once you short circuit it, it's problematic,” he said.
PhotoMath is now available for iOS and Windows mobile devices. An Android version will be available in 2015.