Last Tuesday, Google announced that Lens would be widely rolling out to Assistant on Pixel and Pixel 2 devices over the coming weeks. This Monday morning, several reports note that the visual search feature is now more widely available.
If Assistant’s Prefered input is set to Voice, the Google Lens icon will be appear in the bottom-right corner. Meanwhile, when Keyboard is the selected method, it will appear directly to the left of the microphone icon.
At first launch, users are walked through a brief introduction of Google Lens. Prompts will detail what the visual search assistant can do. It notes that “When you open the camera, Google Lens will continuously analyze what you see to show you information more quickly.”
Tapping to continue with greet users with a carousel of the four general areas Assistant can help in: Barcodes, Books & Media, Landmarks, and Text.
Google Lens launches the camera quite quickly, with the four Google-colored dots pulsating to show that it is active. Tapping anywhere in the viewfinder frames the object in a box and surfaces a card identifying it. There is also a carousel of chips underneath to find more information.
The last three chips is a useful Share feature that outputs an image to any other app, along with any recognized text. For instance, using Google Lens on a barcode conveniently added the OCR’ed text during sharing. The last two chips are thumbs up/down for providing feedback.
Meanwhile, the dots in the bottom corner animates into the Google Lens icon so users can return to the live view. Additionally, they can also press the back button or the exit icon in the top-left corner of a box.
A flash icon in the top-right corner will enable the flash and illuminate what you’re capturing. It will remain on until you tap on an object for Lens to recognize.
Images captured via Google Lens will appear in your general Assistant history, along with the accompanying search result card.
So far, we’ve spotted Google Lens on three of our Pixel and Pixel 2 devices in the United States. Lens in Assistant is scheduled to rollout in the U.K., Australia, Canada, India, and Singapore on devices set to English.
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