Just watched Giles Palmer's presentation on search trends here at Being Digital. His company, Magpie, is one of those I'm including in my upcoming eBook on Social Web Analytics (pushed back a week or so due to better than expected social life... yes, I have one).
[Simon Grice listens in to Giles Palmers presentation].
Currently Microsoft's Jeff Kelisky (ex-Multimap CEO) is talking about Microsoft search being an online representation of the real world... 3D search if you like. He's showing a video of 3D cityscapes, but I can't see much search going on. Hang on, no, that's just a virtual Earth 3D demo. Mmmm, looks like Jeff doesn't know if he's in search or mapping. Or perhaps both, but as he's pointed out, we've had the panel on location today.
Jeff has also been keen to big up MIcrosoft's cashback search I posted about recently.
Now we're on to the panel, and our client Taptu is up there, represented by Conor McKenna. If you don't know these guys, bookmark their service next time you're online on your mobile... critically, it's not just desktop universal search ported onto the mobile... the Taptu team has worked out what people expect from mobile search, what they're looking for and how the results should be presented. And you should see what they have planned for later this year.
As you might expect, social search is a topic of interest, and Conor is on the mic talking about their partnership programme for allying mobile search with other mobile properties; search being the perfect complement to all mobile content. Ariela, from Jumptap (white label mobile search, and a project client of ours for Mobile World Congress back in Jan) describes Jumptap as advertising driven, and that the mobile search user isn't ready for social search this year. Advertising comes first, and even so she says "How many people are ready today to utilise these new advertising vehicles?"
In conclusion, the panel believes that the field of search is wide open, and whilst Google has a lead on the desktop that can't be ignored, and they're pretty good at maps too, the whole bottom up approach to search is going to transition to a top down process of discovery... "find engines".
If you would like to find out more about search, altsearchengines.com is the best place to start.