Google adds ‘Discover’ feed to homepage in AI push | Apps News
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Google has launched a major redesign of its signature search engine
homepage for mobile users.
What used to be a blank white screen below the dialog box for entering
search terms has been replaced with information cards related to users’
Google’s new Discover feed, which it announced as part of its
20th anniversary last month, has made its way to Google’s US homepage on mobile, as first noticed by
9to5Google. The feature adds a series of information cards underneath the search box
on the google.com homepage when accessed from a mobile browser. The bulk of
these cards revolve around relevant news pieces, but the feed can also show
sports results and weather forecasts and will change based on your
interests and search history.
The change suggests Google is trying to change how users find information
through its platform.
It’s a big sign of Google’s shifting attitude towards surfacing
information, where the search giant is increasingly trying to predict the
information you want before you actually search for it directly. Google’s
mobile Chrome browser already shows a similar spread of articles and
information whenever you open a new tab.
The cards might be an effort to increase compelling visual content for
viewers searching for answers via Google.
9to5 Google wrote:
Cards feature a cover image, title, and brief summary, as well as the site
name and published date. An overflow menu in the upper-right corner allows
you to dismiss (or hide), say you’re not interested in the topic, or block
the site from appearing in Discover again.
Meanwhile, the bottom-right corner features the ability to determine
whether you see more or less of a subject. Other content types that appear
here include live sports scores and YouTube videos. Some stories will
feature a carousel of more cards underneath that include a summary or the
actors in a show. Performance on a Pixel 3 is quite snappy, with smooth
scrolling, while the feed is not endless.
[RELATED: Earn recognition for your videos and visual designs that captivated audiences.]
Google is also expanding its Google Lens program coupled with Google Search
to bring more visual content to searches.
9to5 Google reported:
Every picture in the mobile web version of Google Images now features a
Google Lens icon underneath. If Lens has already identified objects of
interest, the button will feature a badge that notes how many items were
found in the photo.
Pressing the Lens icon will highlight the interesting subjects with dots,
with tapping an item sliding up a panel of related images or products. If
what you’re looking at isn’t already marked, you can simply circle it and
Lens will perform a visual search.
Shopping is a big possible use case for this functionality, while Google
notes that websites owners will benefit from another way to get content
The developments demonstrate the growing importance of content marketing
for PR pros looking to stay relevant in Google searches. The Discover feed
promises to surface useful content that appeals to readers’ interests.
Digital Trends wrote:
While the new feature sets out on bringing you fresh content, Discover will
also provide you with evergreen content that is relevant to you even if the
article isn’t new. If you’re planning a road trip across the country or
taking some time off in Europe, Discover might show you an article with the
best restaurants in that area or suggested places to visit.
Google also introduced
Topic Layer, which analyzes content on the web for a specific topic and develops
subtopics around it. Using this new tool, Discover will be able to pinpoint
the level of expertise someone has on a specific topic and then provide
content around it. For example, if you’re learning to play the piano,
Discover might show you content for beginners. If you have been playing the
piano for years, you’ll see more advanced content appear.
Visuals promise to be an important part of content creation efforts, so
webmasters and blog publishers should take care to tag and optimize their
images for Google’s latest scanners.
For brand managers looking to get more insight into the future of Google
Search, the company offers
three guiding changes.
in a blog post:
As Google marks our 20th anniversary, I wanted to share a first look at the
next chapter of Search, and how we’re working to make information more
accessible and useful for people everywhere. This next chapter is driven by
three fundamental shifts in how we think about Search:
The shift from answers to journeys: To help you resume tasks where you left off and learn new interests
and hobbies, we’re bringing new features to Search that help you with
ongoing information needs.
The shift from queries to providing a queryless way to get to information: We can surface relevant information related to your interests, even
when you don’t have a specific query in mind.
And the shift from text to a more visual way of finding information: We’re bringing more visual content to Search and completely
redesigning Google Images to help you find information more easily.
The biggest driving factor in these changes is the expanding use of
Underpinning each of these are our advancements in AI, improving our
ability to understand language in ways that weren’t possible when Google
first started. This is incredibly exciting, because over 20 years ago when
I studied neural nets at school, they didn’t actually work very well…at
But we’ve now reached the point where neural networks can help us take a
major leap forward from understanding words to understanding concepts.
Neural embeddings, an approach developed in the field of neural networks,
allow us to transform words to fuzzier representations of the underlying
concepts, and then match the concepts in the query with the concepts in the
document. We call this technique neural matching. This can enable us to
address queries like: “why does my TV look strange?” to surface the most
relevant results for that question, even if the exact words aren’t
contained in the page. (By the way, it turns out the reason is called the
soap opera effect).
How are you going to adapt to the coming changes on the world’s most-used