Google Translate is a pretty slick tool, and the way that it's integrated with Google Lens for quickly applying it to text in photos is inspired. The latest tweak to the system on Android brings that functionality front and center. Users on Pixel phones are seeing an extra "Translate" action item in the pop-up screenshot menu, allowing them to get to Google Lens even faster.
For better or worse, Google has been working on expanding its Lens features far beyond the reach of its dedicated app. While having to deal with added bloat in your favorite apps can be frustrating, occasionally, real improvements still manage to come from mixing software together. If you keep a host of screenshots and documents saved in the cloud, one of Lens's best features is coming to the web to make your experience a whole lot better.
As far back as July 2019, we saw evidence that Google was preparing an easy-to-access translate feature in the recents/overview screen. This was finally announced by Google as part of December's Pixel Feature Drop, along with a similar feature for screenshots, but it's not appeared since. It now looks like it's finally showing up, although only in the latest Android 12 developer preview.
The Google Lens tool is fantastic for quickly grabbing relevant info from photos. Now it's getting a little easier to use if you're a Google Photos devotee. Our readers have spotted a few new tools when you tap the Lens icon while viewing a single item in the official Google Photos app, or when you scroll down to use the more expanded photo info panel. It's hard to pin down when these features went live, but it appears to be within the last couple of weeks.
Google Lens may be an incredibly handy tool that could as well have been science fiction just a few years back, but it looks like Google is having trouble sticking with one branding for its image analysis service. A new icon has popped up in one of our tipster's Google search bar that's more closely resembling a camera than the previous version, suggesting that many folks might find the old icon hard to understand.
Google Lens has been around for a little over three years now, though it only became a standalone app in mid-2018. In that 2.5-year time span, the app has managed to hit 500 million downloads off the Play Store. That's not bad for a niche app that doesn't come pre-installed on anything.
With Google’s backing, KaiOS has been able to deliver a host of smartphone-like apps and services to its feature phone users who aren’t just ready to make the jump yet. The devices running KaiOS have so far picked up support for popular apps like WhatsApp, YouTube, Google Maps, and even Assistant, although as stripped-down versions. Google is now enhancing the Assistant’s capabilities on the OS by integrating Lens’ camera translate mode, which works with a handful of Indian languages from the get-go.
This story was originally published and last updated .
QR codes have almost infinite uses. Be it simply sharing a URL, a Wi-Fi password, acting as a web authenticator, or helping your pay for goods and services, these little black-and-white jumble squares have evolved into a truly ubiquitous part of our lives. But when you're not using an app or phone feature that specifically knows you want to scan a QR code, you may find yourself a bit puzzled, and that's led many people to just rush to the Play Store and download one of a million ad-filled scanner apps. The fact is, there are far better ways to scan QR codes on Android that don't involve installing a sketchy app, using everything from Google Lens, to your smartphone's own camera app, to a lightweight website that does the job without trackers and ads.