Google expands mobile search

Google introduced a mobile search service that only indexes pages formatted specifically for mobile devices' display.

Google has rolled out a new search service that only links to pages that have been formatted for display in mobile devices' small screens.

To access this XHTML-based service, users need to have a mobile device with a Web browser and enter a query in the search box at http://www.google.com or http://www.google.com/xhtml.

Mobile users can already perform searches from these locations, but on Thursday, Google added a new "Mobile Web" option to the pages. When this button is selected, users will only receive links to pages that have been formatted for the smaller displays of mobile devices, according to Google.

Other options available to mobile users are "Web," to run a query against the full Google Web index, "Images," to search for pictures, and "Local," to hit Google's business directory for local merchants.

Google also offers a similar Web search service for phones that support WML (wireless markup language) instead of XHTML (extensible markup language.) However, WML doesn't support images, so searching for pictures isn't possible using this service, which is available on a mobile device's browser at http://www.google.com/wml. The Mobile Web option is not available on WML phones.

If a user is unsure which markup language his phone supports, Google suggests trying both google.com/xhtml and google.com/wml to see which one works.

Another mobile search option from the company is Google SMS, which lets users retrieve text information from the search index using Short Message Service technology. To tap this service, users need to send a query as a text message to Google's SMS code, which is 46645, and they will receive text results typically after a minute's wait. Google SMS has been designed to provide factual information such as local business listings, driving directions, movie showtimes, weather conditions and product prices.

Google's mobile search services are free, although mobile carriers may apply charges related to data transmission or Web browsing.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?