Google and WWF Russia have teamed up to launch the Free-a-Tree app, developed by Leo Burnett Moscow, to encourage consumers to download e-books rather than buying the paper version.
An Android app available on Google Play, it uses Google's recently launched 'Goggles' to identify any book by its cover and scan it, whether you're in a bookshop, library or somewhere else. The app determines the number of pages, density and format of the paper, shows how much of a given tree it took to produce the paper book, and offers to buy an electronic version of it in one of its partner-stores. A percentage of the proceeds will be donated to WWF.
The app also allows users to 'grow' five types of virtual trees that are most commonly used in paper production. Every time they purchase an e-book, one of the virtual trees will grow by the saved percentage. The results of the virtual trees grown by the users will appear in a global rating, and each user can share them via social media.