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Text direction?

search for text in images

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By Jared Newman1 minute Read

Google is flexing its optical character recognition muscle with the ability to search for text in Google Photos. The company confirmed the feature on Twitter after users discovered it on their own, but it’s still rolling out to everyone.

With the Google Photos mobile app, you can go a step further and copy text from images. Just hit the lens button (the square shape with the circle inside) while viewing any photo, then tap on any section of text to highlight it for copying or searching. If you’re in the habit of taking screenshots on your phone, you can search for “Screenshots” and find plenty of photos on which to try this out.

Google Photos recently sailed past the billion-user mark, so it’s got plenty of data on which to train its computer vision models for features like text recognition. That said, diehard Evernote users may point out that the note-taking app was offering a similar feature years ago.

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