Google app tests new colorful shortcut buttons for Search

The new buttons tested in the Google app.
(Image credit: AssembleDebug / X)

What you need to know

  • Google is testing a redesign of the Google app that would highlight four features with colorful buttons.
  • The four buttons are for Gallery, Translate, Homework, and Sing features, which already exist in different places in the Google app.
  • Though the new icons are colorful, the Google app still does not formally align with its Material You design language.

Google is testing bright and colorful buttons in the Google Search app that identify four features: Gallery, Translate, Homework, and Sing. The new icons were first spotted by Android expert AssembleDebug on X (formerly Twitter)and have been confirmed by others. However, they are not widely available yet and only show up for some users running beta version 15.8.38.29 of the Google app. 

Interestingly, although these four new buttons are colorful, they don't directly align with Google's Material You design language. Google has been steadily transitioning its software and services to Material You, but the Google app has been left behind. The colors used in the Google app beta are light and pastel versions of orange, blue, green, and red. 

The Gallery, Translate, Homework, and Sing features have already been present in the Google app, but they appeared differently. The app's current version has five options, though only a few are visible at once. They are also phrased differently, and the new designs are more concise and feature-friendly icons that signify their purpose.

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The four buttons are housed within the same oval that includes the main Google Search bar. This section of the Google app homepage also still features a dictation button and the Google Lens toggle. Underneath the main search bar, dictation button, and Google Lens toggle is where you'll find the new Gallery, Translate, Homework, and Sing buttons.

It's possible that Google is trying to draw attention to these features. In their current state, the buttons blend into the white Google app homepage. The new orange, blue, green, and red icons certainly stand out more than the existing buttons. 

9to5Google managed to get these buttons working, revealing that they are context-aware. For example, if a user has just taken a screenshot, a new Screenshot button will appear. This pushes the other four buttons over, and users can swipe to access all of them. 

While the new buttons seem to have mixed availability in the beta version of the Google app, plans for a public release are currently unclear. 

Brady Snyder
Contributor

Brady is a tech journalist covering news at Android Central. He has spent the last two years reporting and commenting on all things related to consumer technology for various publications. Brady graduated from St. John's University in 2023 with a bachelor's degree in journalism. When he isn't experimenting with the latest tech, you can find Brady running or watching sports.