Google Lens has been expanded with a new capability that will allow users to search for possible skin issues simply by taking a photo.
The purveying mindset behind Lens is, “if you can see it, you can search it.” Google has been building out tools to support that basic mantra so that anything seen with a camera or captured as a screenshot can be used as the basis for search.
Added as part of a wider scale of updates today, Google says that it wants Lens to be able to help those who might be concerned about a skin condition.
“Describing an odd mole or rash on your skin can be hard to do with words alone. Fortunately, there’s a new way Lens can help, with the ability to search skin conditions that are visually similar to what you see on your skin,” Google says.
“Just take a picture or upload a photo through Lens, and you’ll find visual matches to inform your search. This feature also works if you’re not sure how to describe something else on your body, like a bump on your lip, a line on your nails or hair loss on your head.”
It should be noted that Google isn’t considering this a “diagnosis” or a replacement for an actual visit to the doctor, but rather as a first step a user could take if they were concerned about an issue with their skin.
In addition to searching skin conditions, Google has also added the ability for Lens users to identify major landmarks, such as buildings. Lens can tell a user what they are looking at and the provide useful links to learn more information.
“Similarly, whether on the road or in your own backyard, it’s not uncommon to discover plants and animals that you can’t quite clock or describe perfectly with words. Lens helps you search what you see and learn all about it — like whether that beautiful plant can grow indoors,” Google says.
Lens is now also able to translate text, such as those found on street signs or menus, into over 100 languages. It auto-detects the native language and can translate directly on top of it on a user’s phone screen.
The vision-based search tool can also assist with homework problems, help users search for products, and beyond that, can even find different versions of products — Google uses an example of finding a long-sleeve version of a short-sleeve shirt.
All of the updates to Lens can be found on Google’s blog.
Image credits: Google