With the forthcoming google IPO and launch of competing offerings from Microsoft and others, search is a hot topic. By extension, mobile search is also in the spotlight
Search on a mobile device is a function of mobility. On the Internet, search often leans to research i.e. finding information relevant to completing a task on the computer. In contrast, Mobile search is oriented towards a specific task (problem) that the user faces when they are typically NOT working on a computer. For example – a potential scenario could be – they are shopping or travelling.
Traditional search engines do not deliver answers. Instead they deliver results that point to an answer. In other words, the user must in turn click on one (or more) links to identify an answer to the specific problem/question that they face. This approach does not work very well with a mobile device.
In contrast, a service like ‘Google answers http://answers.google.com/answers/’ is a lot more useful on a mobile device.
But, the real question is – what happens beyond the ‘answer’?
On the web, the search engine(and not the portal) is the first port of call. If a search engine becomes the first point of contact on a mobile device, what can the user do after they have got the answer?
It’s not inconceivable to visualise ‘mobile adwords’.
You can bet google is likely to be working on ‘adwords’ for mobile. In my view, this would democratise the industry and open up the market significantly. It would also mirror the net and also for the creation and access of many more services over the mobile device.
Note that this is FAR bigger than optimising pages for WAP/XHTML sites or transcoding WAP sites(http://mobile.google.com/mobile_search.html). The possibility of mobile adwords is truly intriguing and could make a huge difference to the market