If you haven't already heard, the next 'big thing' is real time search and Google and Microsoft want in...
Unlike current web searches, which index published Internet data with a slight delay, real time search taps into information the moment it is published. This 'real time search' is extremely handy since it brings breaking news, blog posts and public commentary to users in a way only previously attained via RSS feeds or visiting the source of the information itself.
Twitter has emerged as the unlikely champion of real time search thanks to technology built into its site so that users can track tweets the moment they are sent. It also has used this feature to create 'trending topics' which use hashtags to identify discussion themes such as #bbc, #trustedreviews or #meganfox (not sure where that thought came from!) which help bring order and clarity to newly published data and act as a guide to users trying to find out the hottest topics of the day.
Consequently, All Things D reports that Google and Microsoft (and therefore by proxy Yahoo!) are in negotiations for non-exclusive deals that will see Twitter real time search technology built into the search engines in exchange for bundles of cash. The results could be spectacular, finally melding social media and Internet search in ways that have proved mutually exclusive until now.
That said, Twitter will be in no hurry to agree terms since in reality real time search is the company's most valuable asset and it secured a further $100m in new funding last month. Furthermore, the site has just been (somehow) valued at a stonking $1bn which means it has the clout to make both Microsoft and Google sit up and beg.
So given the major long term consequences don't expect to see this one settled overnight...
via All Things D