Using Context to Improve Mobile Search Results

The folks over at mad4mobilephones have posted an interesting look at a Google
Phone patent that suggests Google could use a phone’s location to determine
relevant search results for the phone user. This could allow users to search for
general terms like [restaurants] that would generate very generic results on a
typical web search but could generate very relevant results when tied to a
phone’s location. That’s basically what GPS systems do today.

mad4mobilephones thinks this will go two steps further by factors time of day
and personalization into the equation:

Patent: Google Phone knows
what you want before you search

“This patent is truly groundbreaking in
what the application could do. Imagine that you are planning a night out in
London. At 6pm Google could predict you are looking for a restaurant and, given
your history of looking for directions to Chinese restaurants every week, would
select an array of suitable places for you to eat.

At 9pm you would turn your phone on again and Google would know you wanted bars
near the restaurant. At 11pm Google again predicts you need a list of local taxi
firms.”

That certainly has the potential to improve relevancy.

If the system was REALLY smart, it would know what to do with a search like this
from me around 11pm on a Friday:

tom cruz top gnu nam

Where I’m trying to remember Tom Cruise’s character’s name in the movie Top Gun,
but I’m too tipsy to type.

Context matters.

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