Google replaces reverse image search option in Chrome with Google Lens option

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 20, 2022
Google Chrome

Google Chrome users who have used the built-in reverse image search option of the web browser recently may have discovered that Google removed the option from Chrome. Right-clicking on images displays the new "search image with Google Lens" option now in the browser and no longer the "search for image" option.

search image with google lens

The reverse image search option loaded the Google Images website with the results of the query. It is possible to go there manually to run the search for an image by uploading it to the service, but it requires several manual steps instead of just two clicks in Chrome.

With reverse image searching gone, users may use the Google Lens link instead. Google Lens is not a reverse image search option, as it is designed to provide users with context and relevant information. The lens website does highlight visual matches and links to pages that do contain similar images. Results are limited, and links point to Google Images to get the full list of similar images and pages with that content.

Users may click on the "view all" link on the page, or scroll all the way down to activate the "try it" link, which opens the Google Images website as well.

There is no longer an option to restore the classic reverse image searching functionality in Chrome. Chrome users may install extensions, such as Search by Image, Reverse Image Search or Huntress Reverse Image Search. All of these extensions add options to Chrome to look up an image on Google Images.

Another option that Chrome users have is to switch to the Vivaldi browser. Vivaldi, which is also based on Chromium, supports the "search for image" option in its latest version. The option is displayed in the browser's context menu when users right-click on images displayed in the web browser.

vivaldi search google images

Reverse image searches are useful for a number of use cases. Webmasters, photographers and copyright holders may use the search engines to find third-party webpages that use the images. Internet users may use them to find larger versions of images, e.g., for use as wallpaper images or to get a copy with more details.

Why did Google remove the option?

Google did not provide an explanation. Since it replaced the original image search option with Google Lens, it seems likely that the company wants to push Google Lens usage by exposing the service to more users. Chrome users who used the reverse image search option to find out more about an image may like the new option, as it provides more context about an image than Google Images.

Now You: do you use reverse image search engines? What is your take on Chrome replacing the option?

Google replaces reverse image search option in Chrome with Google Lens option
Article Name
Google replaces reverse image search option in Chrome with Google Lens option
Google Chrome users who have used the built-in reverse image search option of the web browser recently may have discovered that Google removed the option from Chrome.
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  1. Andrew Chu @360fov said on June 25, 2022 at 5:26 pm

    By far the best solution of all that I’ve tried is to keep Lens, as it offers new functionality, AND restore the old search option…but a better one which supports all of the other Reverse Image Search Engines. Simply install the Chrome Extension called “Search By Image”; now you can right click an image and do the old search through Google (and numerous others) – you can even have it search all of them at once. Seems like the power user solution…a more subtle approach would be to just disable Lens in Options, then restart Chrome…or use Brave Browser, or Vivalldi browser.

  2. Boffo said on March 22, 2022 at 9:24 am

    Another dumb decision by Google, probably made by the same person who made Google Plus.

    1. SilentSpartan said on March 29, 2022 at 5:51 pm

      Or like the same person who removed the dislike button from YouTube. It’s so dumb.

  3. Clairvaux said on March 20, 2022 at 9:10 pm

    I hadn’t noticed the option in Vivaldi. Thank you, Martin.

    1. kai said on April 7, 2022 at 3:16 am

      vivaldi also sends you to google lens :(

  4. Biff Clurton said on March 20, 2022 at 4:39 pm

    Yeah, for instance before, if you clicked on an image of Master Of Puppets by Metallica to search for a better quality picture to tag your music files you found some. Now if you click on said image you get driving instructions to Arlington cemetery or a bookstore that sells books about religious symbols in christianity. How is this helping? How is this useful? If I click on a hamburger pic I’m not hungry and can’t find my way to Burger King.
    Google is just as retarded as Microsoft.

    1. Matt said on March 20, 2022 at 5:30 pm

      Google and liberal tech companies have stopped concerning themselves with improving technology for the sake of improving technology. Now it’s all about “how can this technology make people more liberal” or “how can we make this technology to corrupt the populations we disagree with.” Tech has turned into another outlet they use to preach their libtard dogma.

      Don’t use Google products. It’s that simple. These companies are evil and are run by people who literally want you dead.

      1. Biff Clurton said on March 20, 2022 at 5:44 pm

        Not until they sucked you dry first. You’re the product, the cash cow. But yeah, we’re moving towards a world where you sit on the toilet and go “Ok Google, wipe my ass” and a hologram pops up on where to buy the best shampoo for your donkey after it’s been out in the rain all day, first of course you have to watch and ad. End result: Google got ad revenue, you still don’t have a donkey and your ass is shitty. No one knows what to do, ass-wiping was something the ancient civilisations used to engage in.

  5. Unborked Chrome said on March 20, 2022 at 4:33 pm

    This dork move by Google made me switch from Chromium to Ungoogled Chromium by marmaduke. A bit of a hassle to set up with extension support, widevine, a bunch of chrome flags and so on but once it’s done I can say I’m never ever switching back to Chromium. Google Chrome? MUUUAAAHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!! What a joke.

  6. chesscanoe said on March 20, 2022 at 4:25 pm

    My test using latest stable Chrome shows “* Check website for latest pricing and availability.” below the words “See More”. I guess some will thus like the change.

  7. pHROZEN gHOST said on March 20, 2022 at 3:41 pm

    “Search Google for image” is still available in Brave.

    1. Ashray said on March 20, 2022 at 5:03 pm

      Not in the beta and dev versions anymore. So will be replaced too by Brave lens in the final versions soon.

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