A patent application registered by Google could see it integrate a range of specialist ‘vertical’ searches into its interface, with specific modes for jobs, recipes and restaurants, for example.
While Google currently offers specific search features for things like news and (in some countries) recipes, under the Unified Search Interface patent, these would be brought together into the main search results page, with the user able to switch between specific, filtered searches via a drop-down menu.
As the image below shows, this would allow Google to add additional search features helpful to a particular kind of query. For example, a job search could feature table or map views to make hunting down a suitable job easier, along with the ability to search via vacancy posting date and distance.
The US patent was applied for on 12 January this year and it was published on 30 August. Interestingly, one Dustin Boswell is listed as the inventor, despite having left Google two years ago, indicating that the company sat on this for two years before seeking to protect it. As with any patent, there’s no guarantee that this will ever make its way into a real product.
UPDATE: An earlier version of this article reported the patent as granted, when in actual fact it is pending. This post has been edited for clarity.
Thank you to Andy for the tip.