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Circle to Search may no longer be an Android exclusive, could come to Chrome on iOS

The iPhone may get a taste of Circle to Search.

Published onMay 17, 2024

Pixel 8 Pro Circle To Search
Adamya Sharma / Android Authority
  • Google appears to be working on an updated version of Google Lens.
  • A new flag, “Lens Circle to Search,” was discovered in Chrome for iOS.
  • This won’t be the same system-wide integration we see on Android.

Circle to Search first arrived at the beginning of the year on the Galaxy S24 series. It later came to the Pixel phones and tablets. Google said during this year’s I/O event that it plans to expand Circle to Search’s reach to 200 million devices by the end of 2024. This could maybe include the iPhone.

The folks over at The Mac Observer spotted something interesting hiding in Chrome for iOS. There appears to be a new “Lens Circle to Search” flag that was quietly added to the app. Once the flag is enabled, the Circle to Search feature will be available within Google Lens on iOS.

This means iPhone users could start circling and searching to their heart’s content. It’s important to note that this is a little different than the system-wide integration Circle to Search has on Android. As a result, the feature is limited to being used on Chrome for iOS.

It’s unclear if the feature would only be available to iPhone or if it could also become available to the iPad. It’s also unknown when Google plans to roll out the feature for iOS.

If you’re new to Circle to Search, it’s an AI-powered feature that allows users to circle, scribble, or highlight anything currently on the screen. The user is then provided search results for whatever was selected without ever having to leave the app they’re in.

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