Google has unveiled a new wave of software and desktop gadgetry in its ongoing quest to dominate users' experience of the internet. The world's most popular search engine, which faces mounting competition from rivals Microsoft
, showcased innovations while pledging to focus renewed energies on its core business of online search technology. At a meeting with reporters
from around the globe, Google
introduced several new search enhancements, including a way to subscribe to health research from experts and tools that let people save portions of websites in a pop-up box that can be shared via e-mails. Google's share of online searches rose to 42.7% in March from 36.4% a year ago. Yahoo's and MSN's shares fell, says research firm ComScore Media Metrix
says 98% of what will exist in 10 years "has yet to be done, and we won't get there by looking at what other companies are doing." The new tools are:
- Google Co-op. Users can sign up at www.google.com/coop/directory to subscribe to free health information from several organizations, including the federal Centers for Disease Control, the Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente. Their tips on the best health data will show up in search results. Google Co-op also offers city guide information for more than 300 cities, including London and New York. Co-op is designed to let organizations label Web pages relevant to their areas of expertise.
"We're going to take the Tom Sawyer view and see how our users paint the fence"
- Google Desktop 4An extension of Google's tool to search for items on your computer now comes with more than 100 "Gadgets" — little widgets that do things such as list friends' birthdays, show videos and play music.
- Google Trends. Lets users examine searches for market trends. For example, a search for "surfers" will show that most searches come from Hawaii and Australia and link to news stories about surfing. "For the first time ever, Google is making it possible to sift through billions of search queries from around the world to see what people are thinking about," said Mayer. Trends is targeted primarily toward marketers.
- Google Notebook lets people save a portion of a website to a box that can be shared with others. Google showed an example of shopping for shoes, saving a certain pair and writing a note about it, then sending it to friends. The tool works in conjunction with Desktop 4.
Executives denied the new products, especially an upgraded Google Desktop with a multi-media player, were a challenge to the dominance of Microsoft's Windows operating system. Eric Schmidt
said he saw "no limit" to the company's growth, adding that Google would devote 70% of its resources to search technologies during the next 50 years. Elliot Schrage
said Google's goal is more transparency and to be more open about what Google is doing and what not.Google Strengthens Focus on Search with Four New Tools
- Google goes after Microsoft
- PC Magazine
- USA Today
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