Google Launches Search by Image

Google has just announced the launch of its search by image service. You can now discover all sorts of content that is related to a specific image. All you have to do is to specify an image, and you will find other similar or related images as well as relevant results from across the Web.

How to search:

There are a few ways to search by image:

  • Visit, or any Images results page, and click the  camera icon in the search box. Enter an image URL for an image hosted on the web or upload an image from your computer. You can also drag and drop an image to initiate a search. Simply click on an image, hold down the mouse, and begin dragging it toward the search box. You should see a blue box appear, and then you can drop the image into that box.
  • Download a browser extension for Google Chrome or Firefox to search by any image on the web, simply by right-clicking on the image.

Search by image is optimized to work well for content that is reasonably well described on the web. As a result, you are most likely going to get more relevant results for famous landmarks or paintings than you will for more personal images like your toddler’s latest finger painting.

How it works

According to the information made available, Google uses computer vision techniques to match your image to other images in the Google Images index and additional image collections. From those matches, Google tries to generate an accurate “best guess” text description of your image, as well as find other images that have the same content as your search image. Your search results page can show results for that text description as well as related images.

The results page

When you search by image, your results will look different than your normal Images or Web results page. The biggest difference is that your results can include non-image results like webpages that seem relevant to the image that you searched for. The elements of your results page will change depending on your search and on the information that’s most relevant to that search.

See the video below to learn more about Google’s search by image.

You can also visit the search by image page for information.