Google Inc (GOOG) Search is Horrible: Bernstein

Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is considered by many to be the king of search, but Bernstein Research analyst Carlos Kirjner wants more and thinks investors may be underestimating the value of search innovation at Google. He says while many believe that search is a mature technology with not much innovation left in it, the technology still leaves much to be desired.

Google Inc (GOOG) Search is Horrible: Bernstein

Two big problems with Google search

In a report issued today, Kirjner highlights two issues he sees with Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s search, even going so far as to say that it’s “horrible” and that the results it provides for queries are still “light-years away from what they ought to be.” One of the two issues he defines is the need for search engines to process the actual content of documents rather than just the words that make up the documents. The other need is for greater context in delivering search results.

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Google should process content instead of words

The analyst is essentially looking for exact responses to his questions. For example, instead of general results about low-cost flights between specific airports, he wants an actual answer gleaned from all the travel websites. He basically wants Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s search to extrapolate an answer after analyzing the data on all of those websites and then provide the right answer.

Another example he provides uses the question: “How Many Nobel Prizes In Physics have been awarded to Carlos Kirjner?” He says the correct answer to that question would be zero because he has never won the Nobel Prize for Physics. Currently, Google returns some links with his name in them.

Google should take context into account

In terms of context, he believes search will one day be able to provide results based on context. For example, he said if he’s in a car searching for a location, he probably wants driving directions, but if he’s standing on a corner doing the search, he probably wants walking direction. And if he’s at a subway station, he probably wants subway directions.

If he’s at a restaurant and searches for “best dish,” then the results should list the best dish at that particular restaurant. And so on.

He notes that his ideas for search are far from new and were only dreamed of by early internet pioneers. However, he said Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) still has quite a ways to go before its search results will be anywhere near filling these two dreams.