I had mixed feelings about Google's Google Search application for Windows 8 for a number of reasons, from missing YouTube video playback support over being incompatible with Windows RT to not really providing any advantage over using a web browser to access Google Search and other services of the company.
It seems that Google has at least sorted out some of the things that I criticized in my initial review of the application as it is now not only compatible with Windows RT devices, but also capable of playing videos on the company's own YouTube video hosting portal.
The latest version of Google Search runs fine on all devices running Windows RT, including Microsoft's own Surface RT devices. Google for whatever reason missed to compile the application for Windows RT - something that developers need to do to make it compatible - so that it could not be installed on RT devices and systems.
HTML5 video is now also supported by the application, so that you can view most videos on YouTube as if you'd have joined the HTML5 beta. While that may keep some videos from running, you should be able to run the majority of videos hosted on the YouTube website.
The application itself feels like a mixture of Google Search and the company's own browser Chrome. While you will always see the Google search form on top when using the application, you are free to browse on websites using the application as well. This is limited to one site at a time though as tabs do not seem to be supported right now. It is not a full blown web browser on the other hand, as it does not support plugins, extensions, or other features that Google Chrome, Internet Explorer or other web browsers are making available on Windows 8.
Still, if you are looking for a search app that has a lot to offer, Google Search may be the application you are looking for. I will however still use search in a "real" browser as it provides me with options like working with tabs or extensions that the app simply does not offer. The application should update automatically if you have already installed it. You can force the update by following the information I posted here.Advertisement
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.