Google launches a special feature to honor eight Australian animals in its search engine. It is now possible to view 3D models at full scale by searching for the names of these animals and, if available, “getting to know them” through augmented reality on a cell phone, namely: koala, emu, kangaroo, wombat, kookaburra, echidna, quokka and platypus.
To access the function, simply search for the chosen animal’s name on an Android or iOS device, scroll down and click on the option “View in 3D”. If the device supports the augmented reality mode, an extra option called “See in your space” will appear, allowing the user to “interact” with the animal by registering photos and videos.
Demonstration of the tool with a koala, considered ‘functionally extinct’. (Source: Google Keyword / Reproduction)Source: Google Keyword
The novelty is a response from Google to a trend in searches for animals in augmented reality or 3D, which grew during the quarantine due to the pandemic of COVID-19. The company had already inserted some 3D models since last year and is now showing interest in expanding the functionality. The tool also helps to raise awareness of the protection of animals, especially those that are threatened with extinction, such as the koala.
The function is already available on the Google search engine, with the augmented reality capability present on iPhones and iPads with iOS 11 and Android phones compatible with ARCore, found on many devices with Android 7 Nougat or higher. See a video demonstration below: