Gboard’s New Text Scanner: The Handy Tool You Need to Snap Text Easily

Gboard for Android has introduced a new “Scan Text” feature in its beta version (13.9) that enables users to snap a photo of text and insert it into a text field. This feature is powered by Google Lens’s OCR (optical character recognition) technology, and it can be accessed from the toolbar above the Gboard keyboard or dragged to the quick access shortcuts that live above the keyboard.

When you use the feature, Gboard will ask for camera permissions, and then the camera interface will take up the bottom half of the screen. Once you take a picture of some text, you can select the text you want to grab and tap “Insert” to add it to your text field.

Some users have reported that the feature works really well, and they didn’t even realize it was there until they were told about it. One user even said that it worked really well on their Pixel 7 Pro!

While the feature is powered by Google Lens, it doesn’t currently support features like searching or translating the selected text, just basic scanning and insertion. However, both Google Lens and Google’s Photos app have built-in OCR text scanning, along with features like object and landmark recognition or integration with Google Translate.

Google Lens is an app that Google launched at its 2017 Google I/O conference that uses visual analysis to surface relevant information. With the new “Scan Text” feature, Gboard is making it even easier for users to quickly insert text into their messages or notes without having to type it out.

So, have you tried the new “Scan Text” feature in Gboard yet? Follow us @Gizmoweek, Let us know in X or Facebook.

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