Google has been fiddling again...
Returning to its core business, the Menlo Park giant has given a spit and polish to its Google Search appearance and introduced a context relevant left hand navigation panel which draws on technology from Universal Search, the Search Options panel and Google Squared.
They combine to create a 'smart' navigation panel which aims to bring up the most relevant filters for each individual search while building in suggested related searches and offering to refine results based a period of time (past 24 hours, week, month, year, etc) or on a longer timeline.
As far as the look goes, Google has somehow managed to strip down its appearance even more. The most extreme example of which is the Google logo has now lost its tiny hint of shadowing to appear more flat. Scary.
The new Google search interface rolls out immediately around the world and across 37 languages. A mobile version (above) for Android and iPhone is also being launched in the US only for now, with an incremental release to follow.
In related news Google has finally put a release timeframe on its eBook Store plans with a June/July launch. Called 'Google Editions' it will compete with Amazon's Kindle store and Apple's iBooks. 500,000 titles will be available from day one and will be offered in an open format and downloaded through the browser. No pricing details were revealed at this stage, but surely we can expect it to be integrated into Android at some stage.
Google Editions news via the WSJ