Google Search Lets You Cozy Up With More Than 50 New AR Animals-news

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A hippo, red panda, and giant panda hanging out in my office (Photo by Stephanie Mlot via Google Search)

It’s been a tough year for everyone, but playful augmented reality animals are a great pick-me-up on even the worst days.

Google Search on Friday quietly dropped another 50 3D creatures, including a hippo, giraffe, dairy cow, zebra, and chow chow, for people to discover online. Simply search for your favorite fauna on a mobile browser or through the Google app and look for a card inviting you to “meet” a life-sized version of the animal up close.

Spin and zoom the beastie for a better look, and be sure to turn up your volume to get the full effect. When you’re ready to get up close and personal, tap “View in your space” to place the animal into your home, classroom, office, or garden. The looping clips are fun for a while (until you realise that a roly poly red panda can only play with its pumpkin for so long).

Users can go wild, pinching a giraffe to change its size (100 percent is to-scale), holding and dragging a coyote to move it around, and capturing photos and videos of a fennec fox as it sniffs its way through the room.

Google highlighted only a fraction of its latest AR entities in last week’s announcement; 9to5Google also spotted 11 dog breeds, two types of cat (plus a kitten), and nearly a dozen more random creatures, all of which join augmented reality dinosaurs and ancient creatures for your entertainment. Google also last month introduced eight Aussie animals, encouraging folks to search for koala, kangaroo, quokka, wombat, platypus, emu, kookaburra, or echidna to make “new mARsupial mates.”

“Our fascination with Aussie creatures, especially koalas, has been on the rise this year,” official Aussie Animal Aficionado Camilla Ibrahim, a member of Google Australia & New Zealand, wrote in a November blog post. “While most of us can’t travel to the Aussie outback right now, you can learn about these animals from the comfort of your couch or picnic rug.”


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