Google is reportedly testing a new service that will allow users to consult doctors via video chat when searching for health conditions.
The new service, which is currently being tested with a limited number of users, was first revealed by a Reddit user Jason Houle, who in a thread titled “Had no idea Google started doing this” posted a screenshot of the service online.
The screenshot featured “Consult a doctor if you have a medical concern” along with the “talk with a doctor” link that appeared at the top of search results for knee pain. The link was also accompanied with a Hangouts-like icon, indicating that the searcher could use Google’s own services to connect up with a doctor right away.
“Based on your search query, we think you are trying to understand a medical condition. Here you can find health care providers who you can visit with over video chat. All visit costs are covered during this limited trial,” Google noted in the leaked screenshot.
Google later confirmed that it was testing a feature that would offer video chats with doctors to people whose search terms involves medical symptoms as part of its Helpouts live video advice platform.
Google’s Helpouts service, launched last year, allows users to access paid live video chats with experts. The service lets consumers pay for live video chats with experts who can offer skilled advice for step-by-step doing things.
As of now it is known that Google is paying for the feature while it’s in the testing phase, but it is expected that the same could turn into a paid feature once it is rolled out to the public at large.