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What is Circle to Search? Brand new Google Search tool revealed

What is Google Circle to Search? Google took to the stage at Galaxy Unpacked to announce a brand new way to search the web, which will debut on the Galaxy S24 range of phones.

Google engineering executive Cathy Edwards took to the stage at Unpacked to announce the AI-powered feature that’ll enable Galaxy S24 users to pick-out elements of images or text they would like to learn more about.

Here’s how it works…

How does Circle to Search work?

In examples demonstrated by Google during the event, the feature is accessed by long-pressing on the Galaxy S24’s Home button.

From here it’s simply a case of drawing a circle around, tapping, or scribbling on the part of the image of interest to launch a Google search focused on that element.

It’s all possible without leaving the app you’re working within, and without launching a third-party app like Google Lens. You can see the demonstration from Google in the video below.

So, for example, if you’ve spied an outfit in your social media feed, you can circle/scribble/tap the sunglasses, bag or boots for example, to find similar items you can purchase to add to your own wardrobe.

If you’re browsing social media and see a tasty-looking Korean corn dog, you can carry out a contextual search with Circle to Search. You can ask “why are these so popular” to bring high quality information from Google to the same display.

It even works for videos from apps like YouTube if, for example, there’s a chair within the video you’d love to have in your living room. When your curiosity is satisfied, you can simply swipe away to return to the original state.

It also works for text too. After long pressing the home button, you can highlight a section of a text message to instantly launch Google search that will explore in more detail.

In terms of privacy, Google says the search protects users by only searching the element of the image or text the user has identified. 

Google Search Circle Assist

When is Google Circle to Search available?

Google says it worked in collaboration with Samsung on the feature, which will be available within all three Galaxy 24 models. The search giant said the feature will be exclusive for Android devices.

“Circle to Search is launching January 31 on select premium Android smartphones — the Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro and the new Samsung Galaxy S24 series — in all languages and locations where they’re available,” Google said in a blog post.

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