Want to order pizzas or track down the coolest nightclub in Mumbai? You can just Google it out on your mobile now instead of flipping through dictionary-size Yellow Pages. Google, the world’s largest search company, launched a local search facility in India on Wednesday. It will allow mobile users to gather information in the vicinity.
The service will be available in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad. All searches should be directed to 54664.
There are some add-ons. According to Google, the service allows an option wherein, after multiple searches for the same area, the service saves the searched location so you don’t have to re-enter it every time you search. Also, by mistake if you type ‘piza’ instead of pizza, the search will throw up the correct option. The advantage is that you don’t have to type another SMS.
For example, if you have searched for movie tickets at INOX three or four times, the next time you search for a multiplex, you need not search by the name. This means, the search automatically locates your city and gives you only the city-specific results instead of throwing up a long global list at you. That differentiates it from a typical Internet search.
“These services were earlier available on high-end mobile phones. We are now extending the facility to even entry-level mobile phones,” said Vinay Goel, head of products, Google India. “If you’re in a different area from this default location, all you have to do is specify your current location to get local listings,” explains Goel.
Google may face stiff competition since domestic players like asklaila.com, burrp.com and webaroo.com are already offering local search in select cities.
Amol Dalvi, a 28-year-old graphics designer and a Malad resident wants to use his mobile beyond the routine tasks of making calls, sending SMSes or playing games.
“I would like to search for movies that are running on multiplexes. Also, finding out the latest eating joints in up-market Bandra and Andheri won’t be a bad idea,” says Dalvi.
“If this translates into more customers for us, I think it is great news,” says a manager at Rajasthani, a restaurant at Inorbit Mall. Vodafone subscribers already have a global search on their phones and won’t get this localised one.