Google Unveils New Search-while-you-type Feature

Google launched a new instant search technology on their search engine today, which allows users to begin to see search results before they finish typing. A company spokesman says the new feature can save two to five seconds off every search. And with the competition growing in the internet search industry, the new technology could set Google apart from Microsoft and Yahoo.

Google’s vice president of search and user experience, Maria Mayer, unveiled the new feature at an event held at the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco. Google had already offered a feature that suggested popular search keywords as users type, but the new feature will actually display a full page of search results as the first few letter of the keyword are entered.

Mayer compared the new technology to power steering in automobiles, saying that once users get used to it, it will be difficult to search without it, though she did acknowledge that some users chose to disable the feature during testing. She also said that the new technology is the first of its kind in the internet search world.

Analysts have applauded the new technology, saying that it will allow Google to further increase its already-majority market share. Google has faced increasing levels of competition from Microsoft’s Bing search engine as well as Yahoo, especially since the two recently signed a search partnership deal. The company is facing competition for its spot as the number one location to get information online with the growing popularity of social networking sites like Facebook and specialized applications that run on Apple iPhones. Shares of Google have lost about 25 percent of their value from their 52-week high of $629.51.

Investors have become unnerved by the company’s growing competition, rising spending, and the possible loss of expansion opportunities after the company went through a major disagreement with China over censorship.