Google, which can already feel like an appendage to our brains, is now predicting what people are thinking before they even type.
On Wednesday, Google introduced Google Instant, which predicts Internet search queries and shows results as soon as someone begins to type, adjusting the results as each successive letter is typed.
“We want to make Google the third half of your brain,” said Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founder and president of technology, speaking at a Google press event at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Marissa Mayer, Google’s vice president for search products and user experience, added, “There’s even a psychic element to it.”
Google’s new psychic powers result in much faster searches, but the change might affect the many businesses that have been built around placing search ads on Google and helping Web sites figure out how to climb higher in search results to increase revenue.
It is a sign that even as Google expands into other businesses, like display advertising and cellphones, it remains firmly focused on search, its core business and one that accounts for more than 90 percent of its revenue. It has faced competition recently from Microsoft’s Bing search engine.
Google has made its new product the default way to search the Web. Instant works with the most popular modern browsers in the United States and several other countries. It will show up on cellphones and in browser search bars in a few months.