Facebook have spent months slowly rolling out their Graph Search feature, and it is now available to Facebook users who use US English. The feature is the social media giant’s first foray into developing a serious search product. Earlier this year in an interview with the New York Times Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke about how the process of improving and extending Graph Search would be a drawn out affair:
“With graph search, I think that modern search products have so much built into them that we knew it was going to be a five year investment before we got anything really good and different”, he said. “So far we’ve done these milestones. The first one was that we were able to search over structured connections on Facebook. That was important as a consumer product and also as infrastructure that we are using inside the company. The next focus is searching posts. All of this has been on desktop, and the real push is mobile. So I’m not that worried about it. I think the real question will be how effective it will be on mobile once post-search works. I think that’s a five year thing. We have to think about it over a longer period of time.”
However, it looks like Graph Search is moving into the mobile platform sooner rather than later. This week a test spotted by InsideFacebook indicated that the launch may be imminent. The test shows an in depth integration for mobile web users that has the same features as a desktop version.
The mobile search can handle questions such as “restaurants nearby my friends like” as well as searches for straightforward news items, and should further enable small businesses to reach even more people via social media.