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How to use the Magic Eraser feature on Google Pixel phones

Remove unwanted elements from your photos without Photoshop.
By
November 2, 2022

Google debuted Magic Eraser on the Pixel 6 series. It is a handy photo editing tool that allows you to clean up unwanted distractions from your photos. It works on everything from photobombers to clutter in the background and more. If you have a great photo featuring an ex-partner, you can get rid of them, too. Magic Eraser is available on the Google Pixel 6 series and later models.

You may also like: The best photo editing apps for Android

QUICK ANSWER

Magic Eraser is available as an editing tool on Pixel phones. To use it, open an image you want to edit in Google Photos, tap the edit button, and scroll to the Tools tab at the bottom. You'll find the Magic Eraser option right there. Once selected, you can use the Eraser or Camouflage options to touch up your photos and remove unwanted elements from them.


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How to use the Magic Eraser on Google Pixel

Using the Magic Eraser on Google Pixel phones is fun and easy. You have two options to choose from. You can use the “Erase” tool to remove an object, person, background, or any other unwanted element from your images. You can also use the “Camouflage” option to merge something with its background or hide it completely.

  • In the Google Photos app, go to the photo you want to edit.
  • Tap Edit followed by Tools, and then select the Magic Eraser option.
  • Tap a suggestion. You can also use the circle or brush to erase more distractions from the photo.
  • To make objects blend in with the photo, tap Camouflage and use the brush.
  • To finish, tap Done.

How does Pixel Magic Eraser work?

Google automatically suggests elements it thinks you will want to remove when you edit a picture. You can also manually remove additional items to remove or overrule Google and keep a few of its suggestions. Once you remove an element, Google uses its artificial intelligence algorithms to fill in the space with what it expects to be there.

One of the best uses of Magic Eraser is when you click a photo focused on one or two people. Google will recognize your area of focus and suggest removing all other people from the background. The best part is you can apply Magic Eraser to any photo in your library, not just the ones you took with your Google Pixel phone. So you can essentially save some old pictures on your Pixel and clean them up using Magic Eraser.

That said, the results you get vary from image to image. While the tool works well in removing distractions from an image, it doesn’t always mask the empty space in a satisfactory way. You’ll notice some level of distortion in the areas where you use the Magic Eraser. It can be quite evident in some images, like the one above, while in others, it may be more well hidden. It’s also hard to remove elements precisely from images that are very busy, with lots of objects and complicated backgrounds.

So while Magic Eraser can prove handy at times, it doesn’t always work as accurately as a Photoshop edit.

Can I use Magic Eraser on the Pixel 5?

Unfortunately, Magic Eraser is only available on the Pixel 6 and later phones. That means if you have the Pixel 5, you won’t be able to use the feature in Google Photos. This is probably the case because Google’s Tensor chip is responsible for the AI smarts that make the tool work. For reference, the Pixel 5 is equipped with the Qualcomm 765G.

Read more: A beginners guide to Google Photos


FAQs

Magic Eraser is a feature available in the Google Photos app on Pixel phones.

The Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 6a, Pixel 7, and Pixel 7 Pro have the Magic Eraser tool in the Google Photos app.

While Google hasn’t announced any plans to add the Magic Eraser tool to Pixel 5 and older phones, we don’t think this will happen since the feature only works on devices powered by Google’s own SoC.

Yes, Magic Eraser is a free tool you can access in Google Photos on supported Pixel phones.