The top manager of Google wants to make the search of the group smarter.
San Francisco His faucet had dripped, a part was defective, explains Prabhakar Raghavan. The head of the search engine business unit at the digital company Google does not tell about it at the annual developer conference I/O in Mountain View, California, to complain about his suffering. Rather, he is interested in an example of the benefits of a search function beyond the classic search by keywords.
He just didn’t know what the defective pipe was called, Raghavan said. But he took a photo of it and searched for comparable products from nearby retailers via Google search. “I still don’t know what that part is called,” Raghavan said. But he has it.
Google dominates global web search. In Germany, the Group accounts for more than 90 percent of the search business on the Internet. And search dominates at Google: in the first quarter of this year alone, the group generated sales of almost 40 billion dollars with search and related advertising. Top managers such as Raghavan and his development team play a key role within the Group.
Now you want to implement the next upgrade in the successful web search. “Searching the Internet should not be limited to entering keywords in a search window,” Raghavan said. In the future, it will be possible to search in every conceivable form, whether with images, sounds or other sensory impressions.
What the function already does today, Raghavan showed by another example. Photos could be combined with the addition “near me” (in German: “bei mir”) to search for comparable objects in the area. This could also be a photo of a special meal, for example, in order to display restaurants nearby that offer exactly this dish.
With the “scene exploration” function, the direct environment can be explored. To illustrate this, Raghavan showed how a smartphone camera filmed a sales shelf with chocolate bars. The new search function made it possible to select the one board that does not contain nuts.
The function will be implemented this year first in English and then in other languages. There was initially no date for the launch of a German-language version.
The expansion of Google search is important, said analyst Mark Mahaney of the investment bank Evercore ISI. “This technology could help you select a highly rated, gluten-free, locally produced, organic soy milk chocolate bar by pointing your camera at your local grocer’s chocolate shelf – undoubtedly an important skill for modern life,” Mahaney wrote. The approach prepares a whole world of services that can only be used properly with smart glasses.
Google Glass was a flop
About a decade ago, Google was one of the first tech companies to launch such glasses on the market. Google Glass was a flop. The $ 1500 gadget suffered from technical problems, was not well received by a number of buyers and was reinstated for end users.
Company CEO Sundar Pichai is now making a new attempt. Augmented reality, i.e. digital augmented reality, is the next big step for Google. “Magic only comes to life when these techniques can be used in reality, without technology getting in the way,” said Sundar Pichai. With these words, he initiated the presentation for the prototype of a new smart glasses.
Neither on the price, nor on the launch, and not even on the name of the device, Pichai did not give any information. Analyst Mark Mahaney said: “We’re wondering if Google Glass is coming back any time soon.“
Pichai also used the two-day conference to announce numerous new hardware devices. This includes, for example, a smart wristwatch, the Pixel Watch. It is scheduled to hit the market in the fall. Google did not give an exact date or prices.
An improved Pro model of Pixel Buds earbuds is also coming, and a new Pixel tablet is expected to arrive next year. The Android mobile operating system has been revised and a new generation of Pixel smartphones has also been announced.