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Galaxy S20 family formally joins list of devices supporting AR objects in Google Search

On many Android devices, Google Search lets you view tons of 3D models like animals, pets, skeletons, cells, Neil Armstrong's spacesuit, and much more. With the tap of a button, you can move these objects into your home and see them as though they were in your camera's viewfinder. It's even possible to snap photos and take videos. The list of supported phones is ever-expanding — devices like the Sony Xperia 1 II, the Poco X2, the Xiaomi Redmi K30, and Samsung's Galaxy Tab S6 Lite made the cut we when checked in at the beginning of June, and now a few more are popping up, including the flagship Galaxy S20 series.

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Google Search and Maps will soon display business hours for seniors, plus pickup and delivery

When you have a question about a business's hours, where do you go? Whether you use Android or iOS, chances are you probably check in with Google, doing a regular search or pulling up the business in Maps. And while either will display open hours, "open" is kind of a nebulous concept these days. Open for delivery? Open for pickup? Open for seniors only? Thankfully, Google's finally making it easy for companies to share all that different data.

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18

Google Search aims to make ctrl+F a thing of the past, will start highlighting relevant text on actual web pages

Google Search will soon start to highlight snippet text from results on the web pages you click. If that doesn't immediately sound like the greatest thing since sliced bread, stick around, because I think you'll actually love this simple new feature from the Chromium team.

Have you ever searched for a specific phrase or term on Google, seen it highlighted in the result snippet in the search results, clicked, and then been totally unable to find it on the web page itself? It's a problem as old as search engines themselves, and most of us get around it by using the even-more-ancient ritual of 'ctrl+F,' essentially searching a second time for the thing Google already found for us.

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26

Google Search's custom in-app browser is rolling out to more people

Google introduced Chrome custom tabs five years ago, and most apps use them these days. Instead of creating their own custom browsers, developers can just hand over websites to a Chrome tab without the added bulk of a regular browser interface. The advantage is that devs don't have to spend resources on creating their own webview implementations and that users can quickly open these custom tabs in proper Chrome without reloading or losing their scroll position. It's a great system. But Google wouldn't be Google if it stuck with a great system (looking at you, YouTube Music). The company began experimenting with a custom browser for its Google Search app around six weeks ago, and it's now rolling out to more people.

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Google Search and Maps are making it easier to support small businesses with donations and gift cards

As businesses navigate the largest economic crisis since the Great Depression, those that remain on the playing field are looking for any bit of help they can get, be it from federal loans to grants to a complete reimagining of how to run shop. Google is giving small- and medium-size businesses a new tool in appealing to customers who are searching for their products and services.

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6

Chrome tests dark theme for mobile Google Search

Google has started testing a dark mode/theme for Search on Chrome on mobile. Currently live only in Chrome Canary, according to our testing, the flag-controlled feature tweaks the mobile version of Search with a more nighttime-friendly gray-toned look, plus a weirdly inverted account avatar.

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19

100+ 3D objects in Google Search to explore from the comfort of your home

Even if stay-at-home orders are slowly lifting all around the globe, we're mostly supposed to stay inside to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. But that shouldn't stop us from exploring things we'd normally see in museums or shops thanks to 3D models available in Google Search on Android and iOS. We've already covered which animals and pets you can lure into your home, but if you and your kids get tired of acting as an amateur zoologist, there is a whole world to explore, starting with planets and space crafts courtesy of NASA over anatomy all the way to shopping for shoes.

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2

Google Search adds more AR 3D objects, including cell models and anatomy elements

Google presented AR objects in Search with much fanfare during its developer conference last year, and it probably would've loved to talk about additions and improvements during this year's I/O. With the event canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the company has instead shared some news on the feature via a blog post. In it, Google shows off new 3D objects, such as additional anatomic models and magnified views of cells. There are also new capabilities for the viewer.

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16

Google Search will finally just admit when it has no idea what you're looking for

Your search - Google isn't good at being empathetic when you can't find anything - did not match any documents. At least that's what the engine will tell you if you search for a term that it actually can't find. But the company is changing its tune in the U.S. to soften the message of failure and attempt to be a tad helpful, we think.

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17

OnePlus 8 phones join the club supporting 3D objects and animals in Google Search

There are a lot of fun 3D objects like skeletons, cars, planets, and animals you can view in Google Search, which might be perfect to pass the time while you and your kids are stuck at home. The underlying technology enabling this is called Google Play Services for AR, formerly known as ARCore. It's an engine that powers most games and applications on Android that use augmented reality effects. However, since the framework has to be tuned for each device, Google has to periodically update Play Services to support new phones and tablets. Since the last time we covered the library, 42 more devices have been added to the roster.

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