Google: 100 Billion Searches Per Month, Search To Integrate Gmail, Launching Enhanced Search App For iOS

Danny Sullivan on
  • Categories: Channel: Industry, Features: Analysis, Google: Web Search, Live Blogging
  • Google has announced that a new “field trial”of Gmail results within Google Search results is available, a Google Now-like Google Voice Search app for the iPhone and the iPad is coming in a few days and the Knowledge Graph is going worldwide for English searchers. Oh, and a stat we haven’t heard from Google for a long time. How many searches it handles: 100 billion per month.

    The news came at a special press breakfast today. Below are our individual articles on them:

    Further below is live blogging of the event:

    I’m here at Google San Francisco, where an array of press and bloggers (about 25 of us) have been called together with only a few days notice to get an update on what’s new with Google Search. Big news to come? We’ll see. I’ll be live blogging what happens.

    Google does these search events from time-to-time. Sometimes there really is no big news but only a few features combined into one event to help the company get an oomph out of search whenever it feels the need. I heard one rumor about what might come, so I am kind of expecting at least one major announcement.

    Everyone is here involved with Google search. All the senior people, as well as very senior corporate communication folks. And donuts with chocolate dipping sauce. Mmm.

    Anyway, it’ll all get going probably around 9:45am PT. Watch this space.

    OK, Amit Singhal is up, head of Google search and welcoming us. Everyone asks him what’s new in search. He’s now explaining by telling us about how he watched Star Trek and wanted to be Captain Kirk. “The destiny of search…” is to be like the Star Trek computer. Always by your side, answering things.

    First challenge is that you have to get all of the information online. So far, seen 30 trillion URLs online and on an average day crawl over 20 billion of those and Google answers 100 billion searches per month. By the way, Google hasn’t given out a number of searches they handle per month figure for ages, that I’ve seen. So nice news nugget there.

    Now talking about the Knowledge Graph with 500 million things and 3.5 billion connection between those objects, it’s still a “baby step” in understanding the world of ideas the way we understand the real world.

    Next step in improving search is making it universally accessible. And beyond that, to get the search of the future, need to solve incredibly hard problems like speech recognition. “And the truth is, we will have to build artificial intelligents. We’re not there yet.”

    Says Google’s done a lot of baby steps that add up and brings up Shashi Takur, technical lead for the Knowledge Graph, to talk more about that.

    What would it take to make a Star Trek-like computer? You need to understand real things, which means having a model of connections. Google’s Knowledge Graph is the largest collection of connections like that, and it’s still a baby step.

    By the way, Google Launches Knowledge Graph To Provide Answers, Not Just Links, is our past article about what the Knowledge Graph is.

    He’s doing a search for Rio and how it could be interpreted in various ways. But if you search for Rio 2011, the movie Rio shows in the Knowledge Graph in the box. One reason they can predict this is by seeing how people search and what they click on.

    Now searching for Anne Hathaway. He’s saying something, but I’ll I see is Anne Hathaway in Batman. She was so good. Les Mis will be awesome, too.

    It’s hard to make predictions because the same word can mean different things. Cookies in the US are called biscuits in India, and biscuits mean different things in the US. Oh, how I’ve lived that. Same issue in Britain. Ask for a biscuit, you ain’t getting a biscuit.

    Now searching for “chiefs” and how there are different teams in different sports that it could be relevant to. See, this stuff is hard.

    First news: tomorrow, the Knowledge Graph will expand to be worldwide, if you’re searching in English.

    Jack Menzel, director of product management for the Knowledge Graph is now up. Telling how his friend wants to go to an amusement park, to Cedar Point. But it’s so far away, Jack says. But his friend says, do your research — best rollercoasters in the world.

    So now doing a search for Cedar Point on Google. And he could search for each ride, but that’s time consuming. But if you search for Cedar Point, the Knowledge Graph shows a collection of rides right there. “Imagine if Google could help with this” and he shows a “knowledge carousel” that lets you flip through:

    Now says his wife likes lighthouses and shows some examples of using the carousel:

    Don Draper is off in the corner, ready to take over the carousel pitch and related it to memories in a moment. No news that I caught on when we get the carousel or if it’s live yet.

    Now Sagar Kamdar, director of product management for universal search comes up. And he gets to the rumor I heard. There’s going to be a “field trial” of Gmail integrated into Google search. So you can search and find matches from your email in your own search results.

    Demo time. He’s got a search for amazon up and talking about how he doesn’t like to shop. But his daughter wants a wagon. Does a search that brings up Gmail results on the right side, info collapsed so you can’t see it all, but apparently stuff relating to his order appears.

    Some quick snaps:

    Got a flight coming up? Google’s got the smarts to parse your confirmation email so a search for “my flights” will display the results:

    OK, want to sign-up? You can apply here.

    Scott Huffman now up, engineering director of mobile. He’s talking the challenges of understanding natural language when spoken and relating it to real world information.

    Now showing latest version of Google Search for iPad and iPhone with voice-based searching. Screenshots coming, but basically, hey, it’s Siri with pictures and video (speak play the Spider-Man theme song, there it launches playing off YouTube). Or speak how much you want to add, say 2+2, and you get the answers with a calculator.

    The app will be in the Apple App Store within a few days, he says. Here’s a video:

    Now Q&A time. I’ll do some selected ones. Also, Google’s got a blog post up now.

    Did Apple approve the app? We’re working with them. Doesn’t sound like there’s going to be any issues there.

    How many can test Gmail integration? One million will be allowed in.

    OK, I peppered them with a bunch. Carousel should go live tomorrow. Knowledge Graph will work worldwide, on any edition of Google, as long as you have your interface language in English.

    The new Google Voice Search shown above, with all that dynamic awesomeness, already works for those who have Android 4.1 (few do). It will be coming to iOS users in a few days. The rest of the Android world, 4.0 and below, will sit waiting. Yep, confirmed that. they want to bring it out for other editions of Android as well, but iOS will be ahead of most Android users.

    That’s it. Be sure to see our further coverage of the news out today:

    About The Author

    Danny Sullivan
    Danny Sullivan was a journalist and analyst who covered the digital and search marketing space from 1996 through 2017. He was also a cofounder of Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land, Marketing Land, MarTech Today and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo and MarTech events. He retired from journalism and Third Door Media in June 2017. You can learn more about him on his personal site & blog He can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.