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Circle to Search may allow users to copy and share screen captures

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In Short:

Google’s Circle to Search feature may soon allow users to capture screenshots of a portion of the screen, in addition to copying text. The new functionality was spotted in the latest version of the feature and allows users to copy or share the selected image. This feature will make the process faster and more seamless than traditional screenshot methods on Android smartphones. Developers are also working on fixing accidental touch activation issues.

Circle to Search may soon introduce a new feature that allows users to capture screenshots of a specific portion of their screen, according to a recent report. The visual lookup feature, initially launched in January 2024 with the Samsung Galaxy S24 series, enabled users to copy text from a selected area but did not support taking screenshots or sharing them with others. However, this could change soon as the latest version of the feature shows signs of a new functionality.

New Functionality

A report by PiunikaWeb (via AssembedDebug) highlighted the discovery of this new functionality in the most recent version of Circle to Search. It remains unclear whether this feature is available to beta testers or not. As per a video shared on X (formerly known as Twitter), users can now see two new options – Copy and Share – after activating Circle to Search and selecting an area on the screen.

Usage and Benefits

Upon selecting an area for the first time, the new options automatically appear, and even adjusting the area does not remove them. Users can then either copy or share the image. Copying the image places it on the clipboard for further editing in a photo editor app, while the share option provides a list of apps to choose from for sharing the image with others.

Comparison with Existing Options

Previously, users could only copy text using the visual lookup feature. While Android smartphones offer a quick screenshot feature with a three-finger swipe-down gesture, it captures the entire screen. Therefore, if users desire to capture only a part of the screen, they would need to open the screenshot and crop the image manually. This new functionality streamlines the process by permitting users to select and share a specific area in just two quick steps.

Can the Circle to Search feature on iOS 18 be used to copy and share screen captures?

Yes, the Circle to Search feature on iOS 18 can be used to copy and share screen captures. With the new AI features in the Safari browser, users can simply circle an image or text to instantly search for related information, and then easily copy and share the results.

Developer Insight

Recently, Google shared insights from developers who worked on the Circle to Search feature in a podcast. The developers acknowledged the issue of accidental activations due to unintended touches and assured users that a fix for this problem is in the works.

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