Two key parts make up the life-sized creatures that appear in Google Search. The first lets you see animals in 3D, while the second and most delightful is viewing them in your current space with the ability to take pictures. Here’s what iOS and Android devices support Google 3D animals.

9to5Google, By Abner Li


© 9to5Google | What Android phones support ‘view in your space’ for Google 3D animals


Most modern Android and iOS devices support viewing 3D animals in Google Search. This is the simple ability to “meet a life-sized tiger up close.” Your creature of choice will be displayed against a white background, and move naturally with sounds. You can fully rotate and zoom-in as they roar or eat a bamboo stalk in the case of giant pandas.

However, what makes augmented reality really immersive is the “sense of scale and detail” gained by seeing an animal in your environment. This is done with the “View in your space” button at the bottom of the screen. Unlike the first gallery feature, there are a few technical requirements for AR and seeing a creature next to the couch or in your backyard.

How it works

Behind-the-scenes, these augmented 3D animal experiences require the support of Google’s ARCore technology. Phones and tablets have to pass a certification process to ensure that the “sensitive motion tracking” achieved by combining a camera image and the motion sensor works well. Also required is a “powerful enough CPU” that can run “effective real-time calculations.”
We are constantly working with manufacturers to make sure their hardware and designs meet these requirements. At the same time, we are working internally to make sure ARCore integrates well with every model we certify to provide good experiences for users.
Meanwhile, an even more advanced AR capability involves ARCore phones detecting depth. A circular button in the top-right corner lets you turn on/off “object blending” so that a 3D animal can appear behind a piece of furniture instead of just physically standing in front of the scene. Google is recognizing that the background is three-dimensional with depth and not just a flat surface.

‘View in your space’ troubleshooting

Below is the full list as of 3/29 of ARCore devices, but a good shortcut to know whether your phone or tablet will support the full Google 3D animal experience is seeing whether the Google Play Services for AR app is installed on your phone. Visit the Play Store listing to check and make sure it’s up-to-date (currently version 1.16).

This article was originally published 9to5Google.
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