Typing a search query into Google.com is such old news. Google CEO Eric Schmidt gave a much-hyped keynote talk at Berlin’s IFA home electronics event today and said that his vision for the future of search looks very, very different.
Schmidt says he believes that in the future, your mobile phone will quickly and automatically deliver personalized information to you based on your physical location and interests. “Since you are in location X right now, and have interest Y, Google thinks you’d like to know information Z,” the search giant will effectively say to your phone.
Here’s the key quote, as captured by PaidContent, a leading news site covering economics of digital content:
“Ultimately, search is not just the web but literally all of your information – your email, the things you care about, with your permission – this is personal search, for you and only for you.
“The next step of search is doing this automatically. When I walk down the street, I want my smartphone to be doing searches constantly – ‘did you know?’, ‘did you know?’, ‘did you know?’, ‘did you know?’.
This notion of autonomous search – to tell me things I didn’t know but am probably interested in, is the next great stage – in my view – of search.”
That sounds pretty interesting, as long as you can turn it off and exercise some control over what’s being sent. “What’s that ping notification you just received,” your mother-in-law might ask as you travel through town together. “Oh nothing,” you might reply, “just Google telling me there is a business establishment nearby related to some of my recent search queries.”
Seriously though, my long-term mobile search dream is this: Dear phone, please tell me about the history, ownership, news coverage and other information about the building I am looking at in front of me. Make that automatic and ambient and I’m going to be one happy Google Mobile Search user.
Many industry-watchers have separated search and recommendation, saying that recommendation could in fact be bigger than search: It’s the search you didn’t even know you wanted to perform yet.
PaidContent’s Robert Andrews raises two very interesting points in his coverage: “1) Android is already a considerable power hog without searches being performed at every footstep; 2) if Google can increase searches to this incredible frequency, can it also ramp up search advertising in lockstep?”