Android Update

Report: What Google Search with direct chatbot answers could look like

In response to ChatGPT and others, Google is planning to add direct answers to Search. A new report details one possible design for a chatbot in Search as Google ramps up internal testing.

According to designs viewed by CNBC, could feature a “small chat logo” — it will be very interesting to see how the chatbot and/or direct answers are branded — at the right end of the search field. At the moment, you’ll find shortcuts for voice search and Google Lens. (Having three icons there might be too much, with the microphone making the least amount of sense on desktop web.)

Meanwhile, underneath the search bar there will be “five different prompts for potential questions” that might replace the buttons for “I’m Feeling Lucky” and “Google Search”/enter. Those suggestions could be how Google educates users about the availability of the new chatbot feature.

On the actual results page, direct responses might appear in a “grey bubble directly under the search bar.” Google will suggest several follow-up questions underneath that with the usual 10 blue links appearing next.

This might not be the final design. Meanwhile, Googlers are currently testing the company’s latest chatbot. “Apprentice Bard” is powered by LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) and notably incorporates up-to-date information about the world, while ChatGPT’s knowledge is limited to 2022 and earlier.

CNBC says “employees have noticed Apprentice Bard’s responses becoming more advanced in recent weeks.” It’s able to “write a witty and funny movie scene in the style of Wes Anderson as an upmarket shoplifter in a perfume store being interrogated by security” in script form, and answer riddles:

“Three women are in a room. Two of them are mothers and have just given birth. Now, the children’s fathers come in. What is the [total] number of people in the room?” 

A: Seven

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