Google Launches Real-time Search

Martin Brinkmann
Dec 7, 2009
Updated • May 21, 2018
Google, Search

We knew that real-time saerch would be coming eventually and the time apparently has come today. At least for some users that is, as Google stays true to its policy to roll out changes to their services over time.

Real-time search is an addition to the standard Google search results that users see when they perform a search using the search engine.

The new real-time results are very much added like the other additions that Google has added to the search results over the year including images, videos or Google News stories. They appear as Latest results for the "search term" on the results page.

The new entries are on the other hand slightly different from previous additions with text scrolling the most notable difference. A scrollbar is also provided to scroll those results as well as a pause button to stop the automatic updating.

The realtime search results - like other Google additions to the search results - can appear anywhere in the results from the very top to the bottom.

Most users probably will not have the chance to access them by performing searches in Google. There is however a way. Mashable notes that the Hot Topics in Google Trends are linking to search results pages that contain realtime results.

Google has released a demonstration video about the company's latest addition to Google Search.

Google did not provid any information yet on the source selection process. The real-time entries are made up of various sources right now including Twitter messages but also news articles and Yahoo Answers. This could open the door for all sorts of manipulation.

I personally do not like this new addition and think that it does not add a lot of value to the search results. It makes them even harder to access and I would really like an option to turn off those features that I do not want in the search results.

Apart from potential abuse cases, it is also questionable if the real-time results add anything meaningful to the results. While that may be the case at times, think of a breaking news story, it may not most of the time.

What's your opinion on the latest addition to Google Search?

Update: It appears that Google pulled the real-time search module from Google Search again. It appears to be no longer available.

Google Launches Real-time Search
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Google Launches Real-time Search
Real-time search is an addition to the standard Google search results that users see when they perform a search in the search engine.
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  1. Warren said on December 13, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Google continues to innovate, and that is usually a good thing. But this is one more innovation that dilutes Google’s original strength, that of a no-nonsense, no-clutter service. If this were an option, or if there were a way to turn it off, that would be one thing. But to force feed it on everyone, including those of us whose searches are not improved by twit(erer)s is a big step in the wrong direction.

  2. ano said on December 8, 2009 at 12:01 pm

    I personally think that google are getting too dangerous.

    I mean they are linking and fetching data from the entire world into one place. Wonder what could happen if all that info falls into the wrong hands! Turning that perception around, they have already voilated peoples privacy by fecthing and presenting them as hit results.

    Just to give a short example. Everyone in the world are pointing fingers at piratebay for sharing illigal torrents and material. But no one is pointing any finger at google. Google is the largest and biggest illigal media sharing unit in the world. Just try to type any video with “torrent” right after the name and see the search results you get.

    Like i said, no one points fingers at Google.

    Getting too dangerous…!

    1. shle896 said on December 8, 2009 at 8:05 pm

      Paranoia will destroya! I understand people’s concerns, but unless you’re searching for kiddie porn or something else nefarious, who really thinks anybody is going to give a squat about your benign searches?

      And why doesn’t anybody point out the obvious? Microsoft, Yahoo, et. al. ALL do the same thing! Google is just the best at it.

      If you’re that concerned, surf anonymously and/or clear your browsing history through Google’s settings feature.. and then go watch some Glenn Beck to get your all riled up again!

  3. Rarst said on December 8, 2009 at 8:46 am

    I think Google is covering bases. There was so much (delusional) talk about real-time search being big thing… Google simply made a point.

    Personally I think this will only contribute to the trend of low quality results that was started with personalization (which was also recently enforced by Google by changing from opt-in to opt-out).

    I’d prefer Google to spend time dealing with spam.

  4. Mihir said on December 8, 2009 at 8:00 am

    yeh shle896, this idea is superb but they r not 1st mover. anyways they will probably make it better then others ;)

  5. An said on December 8, 2009 at 4:12 am

    This is a bold, timely move from Google that is likely to lead to a massive shake up in the entire search industry. Besides TipTop ( which offers a unique experience that Google would not be able to replicate easily (unless they acquire them), I do not quite see how any other real-time search engine is going to survive after this.

  6. shle896 said on December 8, 2009 at 1:38 am

    Personally, I love the idea of this. Google does a great job of presenting results on the page, so I am not concerned that real-time results will muddy the waters.

    As always, they continue to innovate and remain cutting-edge by trying new things before the competition. Guess, that’s why they’re #1!

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