Search engine giant, Google, has announced that it is rolling out a new feature on its internet search platform. The feature, which is called “multisearch” allows users to make internet searches using both text strings and images.
“At Google, we’re always dreaming up new ways to help you uncover the information you’re looking for – no matter how tricky it might be to express what you need. That’s why today, we’re introducing an entirely new way to search: using text and images at the same time. With multisearch on Lens, you can go beyond the search box and ask questions about what you see,” Google said in a blog.
Prior to launching this feature, Google users are only able to make reverse searches using images separately, and then make searches by typing texts related to the results of the image search into Google.
With the new “multisearch” feature, users can search for a particular image, and also add a description to it. For example, you can search for a particular couch in a photo, and type that you want that couch in a particular colour.
“With multisearch, you can ask a question about an object in front of you or refine your search by color, brand or a visual attribute. All this is made possible by our latest advancements in artificial intelligence, which is making it easier to understand the world around you in more natural and intuitive ways. We’re also exploring ways in which this feature might be enhanced by MUM– our latest AI model in Search– to improve results for all the questions you could imagine asking,” Google said in a blog post.
The feature was first previewed in September, 2021, but it has now been made available as a beta feature through Google Lens for users in the US.
To use the feature, you will have to open the Google app, and tap on Google Lens icon. You then take a photo of what you intend to search, or choose a photo from your device, then tap “+ Add to your search” to add text to the search.
So far, most of the use for Google’s muiltisearch has been towards commerce, however, the feature is able to serve other purposes.
Muiltisearch feature works by using Google’s artificial intelligence to decipher what’s in the picture, and cross-reference it against the lots of images on the web. Google also uses language processing to determine the meaning of the text, and then combine results that matches both strings.
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When asked if Google would make it possible for people to combine text with other media – like music – to form a search, Liz Reid, vice president of Google Search, said that Google is not working on such project at the moment.
The feature is expected to be released globally in the near future.