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Google fights to keep search relevant with new personalized feed feature

Updated 6 years ago
Google Feed for iPhone
Image: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Google is still the dominant search engine out there, but the future isn’t necessarily bright. Voice assistants that aren’t powered by Google tech are getting more and more popular with users, and they could one day completely replace our need to google for information. And these assistants are going to be present everywhere, including our homes, cars, and pockets.

But Google is far from giving up on traditional search, and the company has found a different way to convince you to keep searching the web manually. Meet the new feed.

No, Google did not bring up Google Reader from the dead. Instead, the feed creates a new search experience that should cater better to your needs. Available in iOS and Android, the new feed will offer you relevant content based on your needs — yes, you will still have to let Google collect as much data about you for the feed to be relevant.

In addition to your favorite things in the world, the feed will also incorporate news related to what’s trending in your area and around the world.
You’ll be able to customize the feed by removing sources and unfollowing topics. A “Follow” button will let you keep track of the things you want to have in your feed, like movies, sports teams, and other items that may appear in search.

The feed appears to be a Google Now replacement, as it’ll feature cards with various things including “sports highlights, top news, engaging videos, new music, stories to read and more.”

As for news, Google says the feed will deliver information from different perspectives, as well as related information and articles. It sounds like Google wants to jump ahead of any potential “fake news” issues.

What about ads you ask? They’re not in the feed, but the feed is part of Google search, which is where you’ll also find advertisements.

As you may have noticed, this isn’t a new product. It’s not Google Feed, there’s no capital “F” letter. It’s all part of the Google search experience that’s available on iPhone and Android. The new feed launched on Wednesday in the US, with a global rollout to follow in the coming weeks.

Chris Smith
Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he closely follows the events in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises. Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.