Bing bolsters visual search with math solver, text transcription, and more

Nearly three months after rolling out new visual search features for Bing, Microsoft's search engine is giving them a boost with a few new tricks. Namely, you'll now be able to solve math problems, transcribe text from a photo, and more, all by snapping a picture.

Most impressive is the new "Math Solver" capability, which is located in the bottom menu of the Bing app, situated between "Auto" and "Barcode." Tapping on the option will allow bing to snap a picture of a math problem, then solve it with a step-by-step explanation for the solution. Microsoft says it will even link out to related online videos from Kahn Academy and other providers to help you further understand the problem you're working on.

Math Solver

Also new is text transcription, which lets you quickly pull text out of an image and take an action on it. "you can take a picture of a phone number to call it directly, add an email to your contacts list, visit a website, navigate to an address, or simply copy/paste text," Microsoft says.

Image searches are also being simplified on the web. In the images tab, you'll now see an overhauled search dialog box. From the box, you can either drag and drop an image to search, copy and paste an image, take a picture, or copy and paste an image URL.

Bing Image Search

Lastly, you'll now find a new education carousel in Bing on the web, giving you access to "a full suite of math, science, and language tools to make learning easy for parents and students," Microsoft says. For students learning sign language, Bing also now includes an American Sign Language (ASL) experience that is intended to assist the learning process with more than 100 videos of words and phrases.

The improved image search, Bing education carousel, and ASL experience are available at Bing on the web now. Math Solver is available on iOS now and is "coming soon" to Android. Text transcription, meanwhile, is expected to launch on iOS in the coming weeks.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl