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Google showcases new AI features in Search, Maps, and Translate

The Google logo with multicoloured dots

Today, Google held a livestream from Paris where the company talked about a number of new AI features that will be put into its Search, Translate, and Maps services. The event comes a couple of days after Google announced Bard, its upcoming AI chatbot that the company will be testing internally before its release to the public in the coming weeks.

Google Translate now offers context to words with multiple meanings

On the Translate front, Google is now rolling out a new feature that will give context to words that might have more than one meaning, such as the word "bass" which could mean a fish or a musical instrument. This feature is now available for Translate in English, French, German, Japanese and Spanish and will expand to more languages in the coming months. If you have an Android phone with 6GB of RAM or more, you can also translate text that's been blended into images.

Search your screen is an upcoming feature in Google Lens

Speaking of images, Google will be adding a new feature in its Lens app in the coming months that will allow phone owners to search their screen. They can take images and videos from websites and apps, and Lens can be used to find out more information about the content in those photos and video clips. Google has also expanded another new feature, called multisearch, globally. This will allow users to search with text and a picture at the same time.

Google is also rolling out the previously announced immersive view feature in Maps in certain locations, including London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Tokyo. The feature will allow anyone to view those cities from above in full 3D photorealistic viewpoints, all the way down to street level. Users in those same cities, and Paris, can now access Search with Live View in Maps. It will use AI features to show you points of interest on the street as you walk with your phone.

Google Maps can show info on EV charging station locations

Finally, Maps will offer more info for people with electric vehicles. Maps will now add EV charging station locations based on your car's current charge level, the amount of traffic and your expected battery use. Search on Maps will also show locations for charging stations, and also show which ones have faster charging speeds.

The livestream also mentioned the upcoming Bard chatbot, with Google saying that it does not plan to offer the service to the general public until it hits a "high bar for safety" within the company's internal testing. By contrast, its rival Microsoft is already letting the general public try out the just launched Bing chatbot in a limited capacity, and plans to expand its full use to millions of users in the coming weeks.

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