New features associated with Google Lens now seem to be widely available to Android device owners. It is not quite clear when the features first went live, although they do now seem to be available to a number of people, and on a number of different devices. To check whether the feature is live on any device, launch the Google Assistant and click on the Google Lens icon in the lower right corner. At which point the new interface should show up by way of a ‘welcome screen’ detailing the new Google Lens and some of the new features. It is important to note, accessing Google Lens through the camera interface on a compatible device will not highlight the new interface - it has to be done through Google Assistant.
In terms of those new features, they were first announced during this year’s Google I/O event and represent a fairly hefty improvement to Google Lens overall. Most notably in terms of the real-time and augmented reality-based benefits that are now on offer. As when the interface is launched users can point the rear camera at something and get information on that thing just by tapping on part of the image shown in the camera view. As an extension of this, if Google Lens sees a product and recognizes it, the interface may also surface ‘similar products’ with the option to buy. In addition, Smart Text Selection is also included which means the phone’s camera can be pointed at text, and once the text is tapped on, not only will the search results show up, but also an option to copy the text for use elsewhere.
As part of the update the actual look and feel of Google Lens has changed as well with the introduction of a new card at the bottom of the screen which is largely used for informational purposes and tips - when not used to generate results. The card itself is slightly interactive as it can be pulled up to show the more detailed information on what Goggle Lens can now do. Check out the gallery below to see some of the new features in action, or open up Google Assistant on a compatible device and hit the Google Lens icon.