Google readies itself for mobile search face off

While mobile operators prepare plans to launch a rival to Google's own mobile offering, the search giant is busily getting itself ready to face off against the competition.

As reported by IT PRO, Vodafone, France Telecom, Telefonica, Deutsche Telekom, Hutchinson Whampoa, Telecom Italia and Cingular - are secretly planning joining forces on mobile search. And as mobile searches can be targeted to specific locations, the potential revenue from these searches could be huge.

D-J Collins, head of corporate communication at Google UK said that the company was also building partnerships with a broad range of companies and this would see a lot of innovation in mobile search as a result.

"The thing to understand is the web experience on the mobile is very different to the experience on the desktop and people have different characteristic of searching for information," said Collins.

He said that searches had to be tailored to what people wanted. If people looked up the search term 'film' on a desktop Collins said that they wanted to look up information on a particular film or news about films coming out in the future, whereas people looking up films on a mobile want to know local listings at the cinema.

"We spend a lot of energies and resources and time with partners making sure that the search results you get on the mobile reflects what people actually want," said Collins.

He said the market for mobiles was more advanced in countries such as the UK or Japan and people used their phones in innovative ways. This meant that the company had to employ engineers who had knowledge of mobile networks and a deep understanding of what the local market wanted.

"Because the mobile experience in Japan is so advanced you have to be ingrained in the local culture," said Collins. "People in Japan use mobiles to barcode products, if you are an engineer in Norway you might not know that."

He added that Google employs a lot of engineers in the UK to work on mobile search.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.