Google Lens started receiving support for more Android services from the Alphabet-owned company, having most recently been ennobled with the ability to save images to Google Keep for later viewing and analysis, with some users realizing they have access to the new functionality as of Tuesday. The development comes shortly after Google started rolling out the artificial intelligence-powered service to eligible Pixel smartphones in late November but it’s still unclear whether the firm remains in the process of testing the feature or if the newly spotted rollout is of the global variety.
According to initial reports, the functionality itself works in a relatively straightforward manner and has been primarily designed to help you make the most of Google Lens even when Google’s machine learning solution doesn’t work as intended, i.e. isn’t able to recognize the object captured with your phone’s camera. Following what’s understood to be a server-side switch, you’re able to tell the Google Assistant to either remember the photo you took for later so that you can try analyzing it again once the service becomes smarter or command it to save the same file directly to Google Keep, allowing you to not just reuse it with Google Lens but also download it for other use cases. Google Lens is still in the process of rolling out to the company’s Pixel phones but doesn’t appear to be launching simultaneously with Google Keep support as some owners of eligible devices are now reporting having access to the former but not the latter.
Support for Google’s note-taking service should still be part of the package once Google Lens becomes available on non-Pixel devices next year. While the Mountain View, California-based tech giant has yet to provide a specific launch time frame, a late winter or early spring release seems likely, much like the Google Assistant started its global rollout during Mobile World Congress 2017. Google Lens is yet another step in the firm’s plan to become an “AI-first company” that CEO Sundar Pichai announced earlier this year, with many industry watchers believing Google already achieved that goal. With the tech giant’s focus on AI and augmented reality intensifying in recent times, Google Lens is likely to become one of its flagship products in the long term.