In August we reported that Google had extended its search capabilities to include Gmail. It started testing the new functionality then. This week, after feedback from Google users about the new feature, Google has now decided to extend the search capability to Google Drive and Google Calendar.
At face value it probably doesn’t look like much. But keeping in mind the fact that information is only good to a user (or enterprise) if it can be found, this should be popular with everyone who uses anything at all by Google, including Drive, Google Calendar, Google on iPad/iPhone and Gmail.
In terms of everyday working tools this is a pretty impressive list. Bram Moolenaar, a software engineer with Google Search promises in a post on the Inside Search Google blog that users will be able to find what they want without having to know where exactly it is stored.
Needless to say, in the blog post we are subjected to a lot of Google positive affirmation blah about this trial. But all PR guff aside, it really does look like this will be something very useful for private and business users.
Google: Drive, Calendar Search
One comment that Moonelar reproduced was from a participant in the August trial "wowing" the fact that all the search results appear on the same screen. If all the search results from Google Drive and Calendar also appear on the same screen, then that will be really something -- a kind of instant guide to all your Google information on a single screen.
The result is this new expanded field trial that will instantly enable users to search across all their Google apps from Gmail.
Gmail, Google Apps Search
Similarly, users will also be able to search from Google.com with the results displaying relevant entries from Gmail as well as file documents, spreadsheets and all other kinds of data from Google Drive.
The current trial is only accessible in English and limited to @gmail.com addresses. It is not available from Google Apps accounts and can only be subscribed to from the field trial page.
Like the original trial in August, there are potential privacy issues, particularly for those in companies, for example, that are working off common computers. This is not the place to talk through that one, but in pure functionality terms alone this is at least worth a trial. If you want to find our more about the extended Google Search, check it the video.