With the recent Google Chrome Android update (version 78.0.3904.96), Google has integrated Lens in Google Chrome. With that, now you can reverse search images right away without the hassle of downloading the app externally. You can not only reverse search Google images but any image on any website. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work for local images but we will come to that at the end of this article.
1. Foremost, update the Google Chrome Android app to the latest version i.e. 78.0.3904.96. It’s a stable variant so you won’t have any issues.
2. Head over to the chrome://flags and search for “Google Lens” on the search bar. Enable the flag titled “Google Lens powered Image search in the context menu”. After you have enabled the flag, Chrome will ask you to relaunch the browser for changes to take effect.
Alternatively, you can directly go to the Google Lens flag by clicking on this link.
3. Once you have enabled the flag, you will see a small Lens icon at top of every Google Image search. For instance, when I search “grey t-shirt” on Google Images and the results pop-up. I click on an individual search result and I can see a small Lens icon at the top-right corner. Tapping on the lens icon will bring up the realizable square selection overlay. You can adjust the overlay to isolate parts of an image that you want to look upon the internet, like a barcode, or logo on the T-shirt. Once done, it’ll bring up the suitable results at the bottom.
If you are browsing on a particular website and you want Google Lens to quick run-down a reverse search, long-press the image for more options. Now, you would see a new option called “Search with Google Lens”. Tap on it and a pop-up will show you the results provided by Google Lens.
Moreover, Google Lens comes in handy when you browse through an image with a foreign text. With this feature, you can long-press on the image and quickly share it to Lens. Further, Google Lens can copy, transcribe or translate the text for you.
This feature works on all Chromium-based browsers. I have tested it on other browsers like Kiwi, Brave, and Vivaldi. The functionality and the steps to activate it are exactly the same.
Lens search on Local Images
You can use Google Chrome as a file browser for your local images by typing “file:///sdcard/”. However, the long-press action is disabled on locally stored images. Therefore, you will have to use Google Photos for these scenarios. Google Photos has Lens built-in and it can scan any images you upload to Google Photos.
For instance, if you receive an image over WhatsApp and you want Google Lens to scan those images. For that, you need to upload it to Google Photos first. To do that, open the Google Photos app and wait for the image to sync with Google Photos. Alternatively, you can tap on share the image and upload it to Google Photos.
Once done, tap on the image and you will see a Lens icon at the bottom beside the Delete button. Tap on it and Google Lens will scan the entire image and produce suitable output.
If you do this frequently, I would recommend you to download the Google Lens app. You can directly share photos with Google Lens and get it scanned. Additionally, it also works in realtime using your phone’s camera.