Android users, Google is changing search on your phones; and why you may not like it
It looks like Google is making it slightly difficult for Android users to search for information via its Search widget. The widget can be seen in almost all the smartphones but according to a report from Android Police, not all the information is shown in search results as was the case before. Google is said to be burying some of the information in its Google Search app, something you won’t find in widgets. In particular, the widget is said to hide users’ personal results. As mentioned in reports, users could search for data stored in their device from the search widget. This included personal results from contacts, Gmail and some apps as well. It’s no more the case now.
While earlier this year, one of Google’s support pages mentioned that it won’t show contact results in the autocomplete section since many didn’t use it, now the tech giant seems to have expanded it to other services as well. Now it is difficult to see data from Calendar, emails, search history and more from the widget or the autocomplete section.
There’s no official word on why Google chose to remove personal data from the widget and autocomplete search results. It might be because the firm wants to bring focus on Google Assistant searches.
It might be a possibility that Google is removing personal results from the widget due to the European Commission’s Android antitrust ruling. The firm is said to open up its search widget to other companies during the setup process. The company even announced it in a blog post.
“Earlier this year, we presented Android users with an option to download additional search and browser apps in Google Play. This follows the changes we made to comply with the European Commission’s decision on Android. Next year, we’ll introduce a new way for Android users to select a search provider to power a search box on their home screen and as the default in Chrome (if installed). Search providers can apply to be part of the new choice screen, which will appear when someone is setting up a new Android smartphone or tablet in Europe,” stated Paul Gennai, product management director at Google in the blog post.