Google is making significant strides in democratising its Search Generative Experience (SGE) by expanding its availability to over 120 new countries. Hema Budaraju, in a blog post, disclosed that countries such as Mexico, Brazil, South Korea, Indonesia, Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa are among the recipients of this expansion. The move not only broadens geographical accessibility but also introduces support for four additional languages—Spanish, Portuguese, Korean, and Indonesian—joining the existing languages of English, Hindi, and Japanese.
To engage with SGE, users must opt in via Google’s Search Labs program. Initially accessible on Chrome desktop, the SGE will soon be available in the Google app on Android and iOS in the newly added countries. Budaraju emphasised that the expansion aligns with Google’s vision of making SGE an integral part of how search functions globally.
Testing an easier way to ask follow-up questions: We’ve learned from testing generative AI in Search that people appreciate the ability to ask follow-up questions, because it’s a more natural way to seek information or dig deeper on a topic. Now, we’re experimenting with a new way for you to ask follow-up questions directly from the search results page.
Adding more context to your translations: Sometimes, translating from one language to another involves a bit of guesswork. For instance, in many languages, a single word can have multiple meanings that standard translation tools won’t necessarily detect. Let’s say you want to translate “is there a tie?” from English to Spanish. It seems straightforward, but it’s possible that the word tie could refer to either a piece of clothing or a contest with no winner.
Showing definitions for coding and health information: In August, we added a new, interactive way to see definitions for educational topics — like science, economics, or history — on AI-powered overviews. Now, we’re extending this functionality to more areas, including coding and health information. Read Here Official Release.
However, accessing SGE beyond Google’s ecosystem currently requires using Chrome on desktop or the Google app. When questioned about the possibility of SGE integration with other browsers, Budaraju hinted at potential future developments without divulging specifics.
Notably, a time constraint is attached to the SGE experience. On the Search Labs page, notes indicate that SGE and SGE while browsing experiments will conclude in December 2023. Google spokesperson Craig Ewer clarified that this phase serves to gather user feedback and iterate on the experience. While no official statements regarding future plans were provided, the expansion and CEO Sundar Pichai’s prior assertion that SGE will become synonymous with how search operates hint at a prolonged existence.
Additionally, Google is testing a new feature called “ask a follow up,” allowing users to pose additional questions directly on the SGE results page. This feature aims to streamline the conversational aspect of SGE, eliminating the need for a separate window.
Furthermore, SGE is enhancing translation capabilities by prompting users to clarify ambiguous terms in the translation process. Initially launching for English-to-Spanish translations in the US, this feature is set to expand to more languages and countries in the future, with enrollment in SGE through Search Labs as a prerequisite.
For improved understanding, users can now hover over specific coding and health terms in SGE search results to access additional information. This builds upon the existing ability to hover over terms in science, economics, and history. This feature is set to roll out in English in the US initially, with plans for expansion to more countries and languages in the near future.
SGE results strive to answer queries comprehensively, eliminating the need to click through to external sources. Although specific metrics regarding the impact on click-through rates are undisclosed, Google has already made updates to enhance how SGE surfaces and contextualises links. With the introduction of these features and the global expansion, Google continues to push the boundaries of AI-powered search, shaping the future landscape of information retrieval.