Is there a Google Phone waiting to be released, or just mobile software that makes it easier for people to use Google to search with? How serious is Google about mobile search? How would such a system work?
I ran into a patent application on the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) pages from Google that describes a phone system that makes searching on a mobile phone much faster than it is now, but which would require that data be carried over more than one session connecting to the search engine during a single search. I haven’t seen this published at the US Patent and Trademark web site yet, so the link below is the the WIPO version.
Added: another patent application from Google published this morning, focuses upon a nonbrowser software application that people can use on their phones to search with Google and read emails….
Int. Class.: G06F 7/00 (2006.01)
Invented by Maryam Kamvar, Shumeet Baluja, and Elad Gil
A method of providing information responsive to a request from a wireless communication device involves receiving an information request from a mobile device and generating responsive information for the information request, transmitting a first portion of the responsive information to the mobile device in a first communication session, and transmitting a second portion of the responsive information to the mobile device in a second, overloaded communication session
This search system may use more than one or two connections to a search engine to speed up the reception of information from a search, parsing out results to searches in multiple sessions (For instance, instead of showing ten results to a search, it may show the first five from an initial connection to the search enigne, and then while a searcher is looking at those, return the next five results.)
It could use regular cellular networks of voice over IP (VOIP), and be used upon PDAs and laptops, as well as phones.
Search results might be displayed as text upon a screen, or as audio, and could also include video.
Images of a possible User Interface for a Google Mobile Search system:
This patent application doesn’t tell us whether or not Google will build and release a phone, or just software, and its publication doesn’t mean that there is or isn’t some more news from Google on mobile search upcoming soon.
Added (March 22, @ 4:00pm EST):
Customized data retrieval applications for mobile devices providing interpretation of markup language data
Invented by Elad Gil, Shumeet Baluja, Maryam Kamvar, and Cedric Beust
US Patent Application 20070066364
Published March 22, 2007
Filed: September 19, 2005
If Google were to release a phone software application that could be used on many different types of phones, it might be very much like the software described within this patent application.
From the patent images and patent description, it appears that one could use it to search the Web, Maps, Froogle, and other Google databases. Local searches can show maps, phone numbers to call, possibly offer text messaging and emails to a listed business, and directions.
Web pages followed in search results would be displayed in a format that may be appropriate for display upon the phone instead of using the formatting indicated in the pages’ HTML (though the application does understand HTML, and would translate a page for display.) This application would not be a browser, and according to the patent filiing, would not have an address bar that people could use to type in web pages and surf the Web.
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