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Google Lens now rolling out to more devices

24 February 2018, 09:18 | Gina Pena

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Googleofficially announced the launch of its ARCore mobile augmented reality ( AR ) platform ahead of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Friday. Now that ARCore 1.0 is expanding into the public realm, Google says that developers are free to publish their AR apps directly to the Play Store.

Keen Android users who've been following a somewhat obscure Google Issue Tracker thread from November of a year ago celebrated an exciting new development today. Google is now partnering with Android manufacturers like Samsung, Huawei, Motorola, Sony and Xiaomi, to ensure that their devices coming out this year will support ARCore. Alongside some ARCore announcements, Google revealed that Lens would be rolling out to more Android devices and make an appearance on iOS. Developers without access to a supported phone can use the emulator bundled in the latest Android Studio beta.

"ARCore 1.0 features improved environmental understanding that enables users to place virtual assets on textured surfaces like posters, furniture, toy boxes, books, cans and more", the company said in a February 23 post. That's obviously just a small subset of all of the Android phones out there today, but Google says they did hit their target with that bunch of pushing ARCore onto 100 million phones at launch.

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There are already a handful of applications using ARCore, including a portal to FC Barcelona's Camp Nou stadium created by Snapchat, Sotheby's International Realty interior visualization tool, and an app that puts Porsche's Mission E concept auto in users' driveways. Google said more devices will be approved in the coming months. Google thinks the optimized version of Android could add billions more smartphone owners across the world. Let's see if we can get that shored up real quick, shall we? The update will also be available for English-language users in Canada, U.S., U.K., Germany, Australia, France, India, Italy, Spain and Singapore. Google specifically mentions that soon it will be able to identify specific dog breeds in photos, types of flowers, and more.

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