Google Lens is undoubtedly the most powerful visual search tool for smartphones. If you own an iPhone or iPad and you want to use Google Lens to search using photos, you’ve come to the right place.
In this detailed guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about Google Lens for iPhone, including what is Google Lens, its use cases, and how to use it effectively.
What is Google Lens?
Google Lens is an image recognition tool developed by Google. It uses artificial intelligence to analyze and understand images. With Google Lens, users can easily search for information related to various objects, text and labels, barcodes, QR codes, and more, directly through their smartphone’s camera.
Google showcased the AI-based visual search tool at Google I/O 2017. Initially, the feature was exclusive to the Pixel phones, launched with the Pixel 2 series. Later, Google expanded the availability to non-pixel phones as well as iPhones in March 2018.
Before moving to the guide to using Google Lens with the iPhone’s camera, let’s look a different use cases and real-life scenarios where you can use Google Lens.
Different Use Cases of Google Lens
- Students: If you are a student, you can scan your notes or textbook to quickly make a digital copy of it. Another cool scenario is, you can use it to solve any questions or mathematical problems.
- Travelers: If you love exploring different places around the world, you can use Google Lens to translate local sign boards, menu cards, and other documents effortlessly.
- Get Outfit Ideas: Google Lens is your fashion companion. Discover fresh outfit ideas by searching for any dresses, shoes, earrings, bracelets, watches, and other fashion products. If you live in the U.S., you can take advantage of the “style ideas” to get better outfit recommendations.
- Shopkeepers and Retailers: Google Lens helps shopkeepers quickly get information about any product. Additionally, Google Lens can be used for inventory management and can also be used for barcode scanning.
- Medical Professionals: Whether you are a pharmacist or a Doctor, you can use your smartphone’s camera to scan prescription labels, or you can use Google Lens to identify skin conditions.
- DIY Enthusiasts: Google Lens can help users assist with DIY projects, you can use it to make your home or workplace better by searching for different objects or decorative items.
- Art and Culture: Google Lens can be used to identify famous paintings in museums and galleries.
- Content Creators: Content Creators can use Google Lens to identify image sources and other data related to any image.
These are just some examples, you can use Google Lens in any real-life scenario. Now that you’re aware of some of its best use cases. If you want to know how you can use Google Lens on your iPhone, then there are several different methods to make the most of this powerful tool.
Let’s take a look at each method one by one.
Google Lens for iPhone and iPad: Getting Started
Google integrated the Lens to multiple Google apps on the iPhone, including the Google Search app, Google Photos app, Google Translate, and Google Chrome. Not only this, but you can also use the built-in Safari web browser to use the Google Lens feature on your iPhone or iPad.
Let’s take a look at each method.
- The latest version of the Google app.
- The Google Photos app updated to the latest version.
- The latest version of Google Chrome or Safari version 12 or newer
- Google Translate app
How to use Google Lens on iPhone for Real-time Searches
If you want to search for anything in real-time using Google Lens, then you need the Google Search app installed on your iPhone. The latest version of the Google app adds a shortcut “Search inside photo” which allows you to use the Lens feature in real time. Here’s how you can use it on your iPhone.
- Install the Google app on your iPhone.
- Open the Google app.
- Select the Lens icon in the search bar or swipe through the newly added shortcuts below the Search bar and select Search inside photo option.
- It will ask you whether you want to search from any photo available in the Photo Library or Search with your camera for real-time results.
- Select the Camera icon to make a real-time search with the camera.
Note: Grant the Camera access permission when prompted, or if you want to select a photo from the library, then grant access to Photos Library by tapping Allow access to all photos options when asked.
- Tap the Search icon to take a photo of the real-time object.
- Once done, the lens can automatically detect objects in the frame and will show details related to the objects.
- That’s it.
How to use Google Lens on iPhone or iPad from Photo Library
If you captured your friend’s key chain photo the other day, now you are planning to buy it, you can use the Google Lens to search it online. You can easily use the Google Photos app on your iPhone or iPad to search the keychain from the photo, here’s how you can do it.
- Install the Google Photos app on your iPhone or iPad.
- Open the Google Photos app.
- Grant access to the Photo Library, select Allow access to all photos, it will let Google Photos see all photos available in the Photo Library on your iPhone.
- Open the photo you’d like to search with.
- Tap the Google Lens icon from the bottom.
- Lens will automatically detect objects in the Photo, select object manually if there are multiple object in the image.
- That’s it.
How to use Google Lens on iPhone or iPad using Safari or Google Chrome
Google Chrome is undoubtedly one of the best third-party browsers for iPhone or iPad. The best part is, Google Chrome on iPhone has a built-in Lens feature. Yes, you can easily use it to search any object in the image. Talking about the default web browser Safari, then Google allows iPhone users to utilize the Google Lens feature, here’s how you can use Safari or Google Chrome to use Google Lens on your iPhone.
For Google Chrome:
- Install the latest version of Google Chrome on your iPhone or iPad.
- Open Google Chrome.
- You will get the Google Lens integration directly inside the search bar.
- Select the Lens icon, and grant the camera access.
- Tap the search icon, it will analyze the photo and select objects inside the image.
- You will see the object details on your screen right away.
Bonus: You can tap and hold any image while browsing on Chrome, then select Search Image with Google option, this is a quick shortcut to use Lens.
- Open Safari on your iPhone or iPad.
- Go to Google Images or Google Search engine.
- Select the Lens icon, grant the camera access.
- Tap the search icon, it will analyze the photo and select objects inside the image to get details about the objects.
How to use Google Lens on iPhone for Translation
Google Lens is not just limited to obtaining details about objects; you can also utilize it for quick translations. Whether you are traveling or simply want to translate any text related to your work, you can use the Lens. Here’s how you can use it on your iPhone.
Note: The Google app works great for real-time translations, if you’re using the Translate app regularly, then here’s how you can use the Lens feature in it.
- Install the Google Translate app on your iPhone.
- Open the Translate app.
- Select the Camera option.
- Hold your phone to capture the text which you want to translate.
- You will get the results on your screen right-away, you can take a photo if you want better accuracy.
- That’s it.
Tip: Google Lens’ Integration on iPhone Lock Screen!
Last year, Google released a bunch of widgets for the iPhone lock screen. The collection features two Google Lens widgets – the Lens and Lens Shortcuts.
The Lens widget will launch the Google Lens, where you can search with your iPhone camera or any image, whereas, Lens Shortcuts widget will open the translate feature of Google Lens, you can scroll through different menus to shop, solve homework, copy text, and more.
Google Lens is Getting Better!
Google has been diligently working on making the Lens better. Initially, Lens had limited features, but now you can use it for searching objects, translations, copying text, assistance with homework, shopping, discovering places, and much more. What’s exciting is that we can anticipate additional AI capabilities being added in the future.
If you still have any queries or doubts related to Google Lens for iPhone or iPad, leave a comment in the comment section. Also, share this article with your friends.