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Multisearch Near Me: New Google feature tells you which local stores sell the object in your photo

Multisearch Near Me
Multisearch Near Me (Image credit: Google)

Ever find yourself in a position where you wanted to buy something you spotted online, but had no idea what the object is called? As such, you couldn't articulate your needs to Google. Womp, womp!

Thanks to Google's new Multisearch Near Me feature, users can run a photo through the search engine and it will spit out results on which local stores carry the object featured in the image. Google boasted that the cool new perk, announced during the search engine giant's I/O event, will work for apparel, home goods, food, and more.

How Multisearch Near Me Works

Senior Vice President Prabhakar Raghavan, the man at the helm of Google Search, Google Assistant, Geo, Ads, Commerce and Payments products, gushed about Multisearch Near Me during the Google I/O keynote. To help viewers understand how Multisearch Near Me works, Raghavan used food as a use case.

"Let's say I spot a tasty looking dish online. I don't know what's in it or what it's called, but it's making me hungry," Raghavan said.

Multisearch Near Me

Multisearch Near Me (Image credit: Google)

"With this new capability, I can quickly identify that it's Japchae, a Korean dish," he said. Raghavan added that Multisearch Near Me will then show him results of which local restaurants serve Japchae so he can finally enjoy it for himself. Yum!

Multisearch Near Me

Multisearch Near Me (Image credit: Google)

So what's going on underneath the hood that Google can so intelligently provide results on local restaurants that serve Japchae? Well, the search engine can recognize the visual intricacies of the dish and cross-reference it with millions of images from reviews.

In order to use MultiSearch Near Me, users can snap a photo with their camera or long-press an image they've discovered via Google Search, add the phrase "near me," and voila, they'll get results on local businesses that carry the object they desire.

Multisearch Near Me will be available globally later this year in English, but Google promised that it will come to more languages in the future. 

Be sure to check out our live blog of Google's I/O event so you can get the scoop on more eye-catching announcements from the search engine giant.

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!