Google.com is the most visited website on the internet and this shows how huge and indispensable search engine use is to internet users. With the competition becoming stronger notably from the Bing search engine, Google has had to dig deep to continue to satisfy and impress its users.
The following are some of the new search features and capabilities that Google has added in the year 2010 alone:
Google Instant: Google Instant is a feature introduced in September 2010. It allows you to get results even as you type in your query i.e. Google begins to display possible results even before you finish typing in your search term. As a result, searches are faster since you do not have to finish typing or press enter (or click the Search button). Google Instant also predicts your search query and helps guide your search if you do not know what you are looking for.
Instant Previews: Instant Previews displays a visual preview of your search results and was launched in November, 2010. To the right of a Google search result, you will now find a magnifying glass icon. When you click on the icon, it shows you what the webpage looks like. Additionally, areas of the page where your search term appears are highlighted allowing you to see if they match what you are looking for. Instant Previews is also helpful because you can visually compare search results to determine the best one before you click.
Google Social Search: Social networking is the top internet trend nowadays and Google realizes the importance of this. People on social networks love to share interesting and trending information and media such as web pages, photos and videos. Thus, the Google Social Search feature was developed to help users find such information. There is an added benefit to this which is that Social Search produces search results from the people you know and trust.
Launched in January 2010, Social Search finds search results from the people in your social circle. Your social circle includes
– People on your Gmail, Google Talk and Google Contacts lists.
– People you know on Twitter, FriendFeed, Google Buzz, Google Reader, etc
To use Social Search, click More Search Tools on the panel to the left of Google search results and select Social to see results from your social circle.
Twitter Timeline Search: This feature was announced in April, 2010. When you search for a term, the Twitter timeline search displays results from Twitter showing tweets related to your search term. It is a real-time search which allows you find current and recent tweets or from even as far back as when Twitter was launched in 2006.
Google Instant Previews
Google Social Search: Features
Search is Getting More Social: Official Google Blog
Replay it: Google search across the Twitter archive