Google Toolbar 7 Gets Google Instant Predictive Search

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2011-04-20 Print this article Print

Google April 19 jazzed up Google Toolbar 7 for Internet Explorer with Google Instant, the company's predictive search technology.

Google Instant surfaces search results to users as they type their require, eliminating the need for users to hit the enter button.

You'd be surprised how much time this saves users, who spend 9 seconds on average entering a search query into Google. After they hit the search button, the query spends an average of 300 milliseconds traversing Google's servers before results hurtle back to the users, who spend an average of 15 seconds picking a selection from the results.

Google Instant shaves time off the task by predicting what users are looking for as they type.

The technology has been paired with and in Google's Chrome Web browser, but by adding it to the new Toolbar Google is making the tool much more attractive to users who want to accelerate their search experience.

Another cool feature paired with Instant in Toolbar 7: users who want to return to a page they were on while typing their search can hit the Escape button, or by hitting IE's back button once you've found the info you want.

However, here are the caveats. First, Toolbar Instant works on IE8 and IE9 so users running an older version of IE must upgrade or switch to Instant in Chrome. There's no doubt which Google prefers users to use.

Second, Toolbar users must actually enable instant by selecting it in the Toolbar options menu and clicking save.

Instant isn't the only perk in Google Toolbar 7. In an effort to clean up the user experience, tools that users patronize most will remain visible on the toolbar, while buttons that haven't been used recently will be moved to the new "More" button, which users can catch a screenshot of here

Unlike most of Google's Web services, this personalization is stored only on a user's computer, and not in Google's cloud. This means so no information is sent to Google unless they have enabled their usage statistics.

However, PageRank and spell check features require sharing some information with Google. Users may toggle these features on or off via a new privacy settings menu.

Just like with Chrome, those who already use Google Toolbar 6 will automatically be updated to the new version over the next few weeks.

Users may also download Google Toolbar 7 in English, with other language support coming over the next week.

Check out the demo of the highlights after the jump: |

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