3Google Mobile Places
Google has added shortcut icons to the bottom of the refreshed mobile homepage. The Map on top has location markers for places nearby. Even better, when a user scrolls through the results, the map remains at the top of the page and adjusts on the fly to the listing a user is looking at. Huffman showed how to look up local restaurants and see how close he was to each restaurant result, with the map changing in context based on how close each restaurant was to him.
Another mobile perk is a query builder that Google has already employed in its Google Search app for Android and Apple iOS devices. Basically, when a user types in a search, he or she can add suggested words or phrases by tapping the plus sign next to results to build out queries piece by piece. Now it’s available via www.google.com from the mobile browser.
5Google Tablet Search
7Google Mobile Speech
8Google Voice Search—Now on the Desktop
10Voice Search Translation
11Search by Image
This feature can be a blockbuster. Next to the microphone on images.google.com, users will also see a camera icon. By clicking the camera, a user can upload any picture or plug in an image URL from the Web and ask Google to figure out what it is, which can help a user also find out where a photo was taken if they dredged up an old photo whose provenance no one remembers.
12Image Search Redux
Google Instant stunned the search world last September and wowed users accessing it via mobile devices by paring search per query times by an average of 5 seconds. However, sometimes pages still take too long to load, so Google has added a new feature called Instant Pages that prepares the top search in the background while a user chooses which link to click. This saves users another two to five seconds on typical searches. This is done via “prerendering” technology in Chrome. In this side-by-side comparison above, Google shows an Instant search page without prerendering on the left and one with it on the right. Note that the page one the left has not finished loading (see blank masthead space) while the Instant Pages example on the left loaded in the blink of an eye. To use Instant Pages, users will want to try Google’s next beta release of Chrome, version 13. The feature will be available to all Chrome users later this summer.
Google has also applied Instant to its Image search results, called Google Instant with Images. Here Google Images with Instant will be available over the next couple of months to all domains and languages where Instant is already offered. Users may also opt in to try it sooner here.
15Meet the Team
Heres a look at the team that worked to bring the myriad new search features to fruition.