Google Lens’ new update lets you solve math problems from a photo

Though our resident data science expert Theunis might disagree, there’s nothing worse than being stuck inside while social distancing and being left with nothing but math homework. Fortunately, Google has arrived to remedy our problems with a new and forthcoming Google Lens update, which can now solve math equations through a simple photo of a textbook problem.

Engadget notes that the news follows on from previous Lens updates, which have been geared towards helping students complete their homework with assistive tools. For example, the platform previously added support to view 3D anatomy models and cellular structures through augmented reality. Now, Lens is ready to help solve math problems once and for all.

To use the forthcoming feature, students will be able to photograph a problem and receive step-by-step guides to assist them in solving it; detailed explanations are available throughout the process to help students get to grips with new problems, which will undoubtedly come in handy for students trying to learn remotely.

Interestingly, the feature is a port from Socratic – a learning app available for both iOS and Android – which Google acquired in 2019. While Google hasn’t yet clarified when we can expect to receive Lens’ new update, it remains to be seen what other features the app may inherit. Google also recently expanded its own ‘Read Along‘ app with the view of teaching learners how to read through a handy smartphone app.

Lens began its life as Google’s visual search tool, but has steadily expanded its capabilities over the past few years. Interestingly, the company isn’t alone in attempting to tackle equations through a visual search app; Microsoft has attempted a similar function with its aptly named ‘Math‘ app.

What are your thoughts? Would you, or would you encourage someone to, use Google’s latest Lens update for homework? Let us know your opinion in the comments below.