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  • Kyle Chua

Google Expands Search With AI Overviews, Video Queries

With the help of generative artificial intelligence (AI), Google Search, the world’s most popular search engine, could soon become more capable in delivering the information you need.

Credits: Google

Google at its annual I/O 2024 developer conference announced that it’s expanding Search with new AI features, powered by a custom-built Gemini model – a model trained for multi-step reasoning, planning and multimodality


“Now, with generative AI, Search can do more than you ever imagined,” said Liz Reid,

VP, Head of Google Search in a blog post. “So you can ask whatever’s on your mind or whatever you need to get done – from researching to planning to brainstorming – and Google will take care of the legwork.”


Here’s a rundown of the new features coming to Search:


AI Overviews

Credits: Google

When you’re pressed for time, the last thing you probably want to do is sift through multiple websites and sources, piecing together small bits of information to find the answer to your question. AI Overviews was built so that you don’t have to go through that process anymore.


Search can do the heavy lifting for you, delivering you a quick answer or a topic summary with all relevant information you need to answer or explain your query. That answer or summary also includes links to websites with more information to complex queries. Google said that links that appear in such a way get more clicks than if the page appears as a traditional web listing for your query.


You can also expect some ads in your results, but they’ll appear in dedicated slots throughout the page, with clear labeling that should distinguish them from organic results.


In the near future, Google said you’ll be able to adjust AI Overview with options to simplify the language or break down the results in more detail, underscoring the Gemini’s multi-step reasoning capabilities. These same capabilities enable AI overviews to answer complex queries in one go.


For example, you can search for an Italian restaurant that is, say, within a few blocks from you, has vegetarian pizza and has outdoor seating in one query.


AI Overview has begun rolling out in the U.S., with more countries following suit.


Plan ahead

Credits: Google

Apart from answering queries, Search can now make plans for you. You can, for instance, search “create a three day meal plan for a group that’s easy to prepare,” and you’ll get a range of recipes from different websites. If there’s something that’s not to your liking, you can easily ask Search to adjust it for you. Then, once everything is good, you can export your meal plan to Docs or Gmail.


Google says meal and trip planning features are available now in Search Labs in English in the U.S. The search giant plans to add more customisation capabilities and more categories for plans like parties, date night and workouts later in the year.


AI-organised results page


When you’re brainstorming, it’s likely easier if you can get a big picture and consider all your options. Thankfully, you no longer have to do that yourself and can employ Search’s new AI features for help.


The next time you’re brainstorming, you can look to Search to create an AI-organised results page that makes it easier for you to explore ideas. You’ll see results categorised under AI-generated headlines featuring a range of perspectives and content types.


The feature is already available for some English searches in the U.S. that include dining and recipes, with movies, music, books, hotels, shopping and more to follow.


Video searches

Credits: Google

If you can’t put your query to words, you can simply pull up your device’s camera, take a video, and let Search find your answer. Searching in such a manner should save you time and trouble of coming up with the right words to queries that involve motion, for example, such as finding the resources to troubleshoot a broken record player.


Google said Searching with video will be available soon for Search Labs in English in the U.S., and it’ll expand to more regions over time.

 
  • Google at its annual I/O 2024 developer conference announced that it’s expanding Search with new AI features, powered by a custom-built Gemini model.

  • This includes AI Overviews, a new feature that delivers you a quick answer or a topic summary with all relevant information you need to answer or explain your query.

  • Google Search is also now multimodal as you can now search using video.

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