The United States Federal Trade Commission or FTC decided to drop its plans of slapping Google with an antitrust lawsuit in the beginning of this month. Google is wasting no time and is taking this as a green signal to aggressively pursue the development of Google 2.0. Google 2.0 will transform the Google search engine into an answer engine being able to answer users’ questions instead of just returning results that match the typed keywords.
The FTC was prompted to investigate the search engine giant when its competitors began to complain that the changes to the Google search engine gives an unfair advantage to other Google products and that this was a move by the company to promote its own products over that of others. Competitors and other companies saw a decline in the amount of traffic to their websites due to the changes in Google’s search algorithm. However, the FTC concluded otherwise and saw nothing wrong with Google practices.
Current Google search engine
The ultimate goal of the Google search engine is to become more like the fictional computer in Star Trek where it can answer any question that users ask. Most industry experts agree that FTC’s decision to not pursue a lawsuit against Google will allow the search engine giant to achieve this ultimate goal.
The search engine has already seen many changes that make it a rudimentary “answer machine”. Now when users type in the name of a famous personality, the Google Knowledge Graph is triggered that displays a picture and important points about that person in the search results page. Similarly, a search conducted on the term “weather” returns the local weather forecast at the top of the results page. Similar technology is available for mobile platforms too with the Android “Google Now” app providing data based on calendar items and interests without opening the search engine.
What to expect
According to the head of Google’s search business – Amit Singhal, its search engine technology is constantly changing and moving forward. He predicts that in the next few years, users will be able to verbally ask the search engine questions. So users will be able to have conversations with the search engine. This means that Google’s search engine is poised to become a super-charged Siri.
On the other hand, search engine experts predict that Google’s changes to its search engine could anger content providers as the changes could ruin the unspoken agreement that search engines have with content providers. Search engines are able to use content from content providers as this directs traffic towards the websites of the content providers. Google’s challenge is to be able to transform into an answer engine and still be the beloved company that it is today.