Posted:
We’ve all been there: you’re on your phone and click through to a website, only to find it’s hard to read or burdensome to navigate because it isn’t formatted for a mobile screen. With mobile phones increasingly becoming the primary way for people to search the Internet, we want to ensure that when you search on Google you find content that is not just relevant and timely, but also easy to read and interact with on smaller mobile screens.

A lack of mobile friendliness is also a problem for web publishers: visitors abandon websites that aren’t mobile friendly at higher rates. And research shows 74% of users say they are more likely to return to a mobile-friendly site.

That’s why we’ve been encouraging webmasters to create sites that avoid the pitfalls of small text and hard to navigate formatting in order to provide a great experience for mobile visitors to their pages. Back in November, we introduced a “mobile-friendly badge” to notify users when a link in search results led to a mobile friendly-page, and provided resources to help webmasters become mobile-friendly. And today we’re starting to roll out a change that we announced two months ago to take into account whether a site is mobile-friendly when we rank search results on mobile phones.

Note that this is just one of over 200 signals we use to evaluate the best results. Non-mobile-friendly sites won’t disappear from mobile Search results—they may still rank high if they hold great content the user wants.

If you use Google search on your mobile phone, you can now more easily find high-quality and relevant results where text is readable without tapping or zooming, tap targets are spaced appropriately, and the page avoids unplayable content or horizontal scrolling. In just the two months since we announced this change, we’ve seen a 4.7 percentage point uptick in the proportion of sites that are mobile friendly, and we hope to see even more in the coming months.

Our mobile ranking will now use mobile-friendliness as a signal that weighs in favor of pages that are formatted for mobile phones, like the image on the right.

The good news is that it doesn't have to be expensive or time-consuming: it could be as simple as adjusting website settings or picking out a design you like. Even if you opt to fully redesign your site, a small business website with 10-20 pages could be completed in a day or so.

Webmasters can check if their site is mobile-friendly by examining individual pages with the Mobile-Friendly Test or checking the status of the entire site through the Mobile Usability report in Webmaster Tools. Once a site becomes mobile-friendly, we will automatically re-process those pages (and webmasters can expedite the process by using Fetch as Google with Submit to Index).

Posted:
If you’re done filling out your bracket for the NCAA Tournament, the Google app is here to help you keep up with every second of the action. Whether you’re searching for an updated bracket, the score of the Kentucky game, or live streams of each game (powered by Turner Sports), you can find it all in the Google app on your Android or iOS device.

Check in with the Google app for the latest tournament coverage
Just say “Ok Google, show me the latest on March Madness” to get real-time coverage of every game throughout the tournament. You’ll see a bracket with in-game and recap videos, and with one tap you can get a detailed box score and livestream link for each game. And for those times you can’t sneak away from work to watch a game live, cards in the Google app will show you in-progress scores throughout the games.
Find content directly from your favorite apps
If you want up-to-date news on your favorite teams or to catch up on highlight videos in the apps you love—like NCAA March Madness Live or Bleacher Report—the Google app can help you find it all quickly and easily. On Android devices, clicking on search results from mobile apps you’ve downloaded will now take you straight to that content. (It takes about a day for newly downloaded apps to appear in your search results.)
As you join the frenzy this March, the Google app is the ultimate sports buff to help you in your office pool or to keep up with your alma mater. And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter to see which teams and players are trending in Search, posted in real-time throughout the tournament.

Posted:


SafeBrowsing helps keep you safe online and includes protection against unwanted software that makes undesirable changes to your computer or interferes with your online experience.

We recently expanded our efforts in Chrome, Search, and ads to keep you even safer from sites where these nefarious downloads are available.

  • Chrome: Now, in addition to showing warnings before you download unwanted software, Chrome will show you a new warning, like the one below, before you visit a site that encourages downloads of unwanted software.
  • Search: Google Search now incorporates signals that identify such deceptive sites. This change reduces the chances you’ll visit these sites via our search results.
  • Ads: We recently began to disable Google ads that lead to sites with unwanted software.
If you’re a site owner, we recommend that you register your site with Google Webmaster Tools. This will help you stay informed when we find something on your site that leads people to download unwanted software, and will provide you with helpful tips to resolve such issues. 

We’re constantly working to keep people safe across the web. Read more about Safe Browsing technology and our work to protect users here.


Posted:
February 21 marks the 15th anniversary of the UNESCO declaration of International Mother Language Day. Since then each Mother Language Day has promoted the preservation and protection of the approximately 7,000 languages that are spoken throughout the world, half of which are estimated to become extinct in a few generations.

In honor of Mother Language Day 2015, we've decorated the Google Translate homepage with an illustration that celebrates this year's theme of "inclusive education through and with language." Language education helps people connect with others both within and outside their local community.


Click on our illustration on the homepage to visit the Google Translate Community where you can help add new languages to Google Translate and improve those that are currently supported. We've already seen Cantonese, Kyrgyz and Pashto speakers contribute a lot, and we hope to continue our collaboration with these communities so we can eventually add these languages.


We hope you join us for Mother Language Day to improve translation for everyone and show pride for your language. We'll be highlighting the top languages with the most contributions to Translate Community over the next 48 hours on our Google+ page. Show some love for your language and help it get to the top of the list by contributing today!



(Cross-posted from the Google Translate Blog)

Posted:
Whether you’re looking for the latest clips from The Daily Show, news about the possibility of Greece leaving the Eurozone, or highlights from today’s Panthers game against the Canadiens, it can be hard to sift through all the great videos, articles and more out there to find what interests you. Now, if you search on Google on your mobile, you’ll see the freshest, most relevant content from within a single website grouped together in one easy-to-scan place.
When you search for a topic, just scroll down to see a "carousel" of recent articles, videos or more on that subject. Tap any link to read or watch exactly what you’re interested in. For example, if you search for NPR, you’ll see links to all their latest articles and videos. Search for the Knicks to browse content from their site as well as videos and news from ESPN or Bleacher Report. (If you don’t see this new feature yet when you search for your favorite site, stay tuned—we’ll be making this available for more sites soon.)
Finally, whether you’re watching the Academy Awards live on ABC this Sunday or prefer to catch up after the ceremony, we’ve got you covered. Search for the Oscars in the Google app and you’ll find everything you need, from acceptance speeches to behind-the-scenes moments, to go into your Monday morning meetings prepared to gossip.

Posted by Ardan Arac, Product Manager, Search

Posted:
Now cards in the Google app give you relevant information at the right time, without you having to ask for it—whether it’s the score from the Rockets game, your flight status, or the latest story on Greece’s new government. But a lot of useful information lives inside apps on your phone, from your favorite music to last-minute hotel deals to home-buying tips. Today, you have two ways to get information from these apps—either remember to constantly open them up and look, or get a notification, which you may forget to act on if it shows up at the wrong time.

Starting today, the Google app on Android can help you keep up with all the good stuff in 40 different apps at a glance—it’ll bring you Now cards to help you out with your day-to-day life, giving you information that’s helpful to you, right when you need it.

In the morning, catch up on news of the day with cards from The Guardian. On your commute, Pandora can give you recommendations for music to play, based on what you like, or you can be reminded to complete your daily French lesson on Duolingo. During your downtime, you can take care of the groceries, with a card from Instacart reminding you to stock up on the things you often order. If you’re planning a trip and looked up places to stay on your Airbnb app but couldn't make up your mind, you’ll see Now cards from Airbnb for the location and dates you’ve researched. And when you land at an airport, you’ll see a card to order a Lyft.

We’ve teamed up with 30+ developers to bring you these and other new cards, which are rolling out over the next few weeks. Check out some examples on our site—we plan to add more cards and expand this feature over time. Until then, make sure to update to the latest version of the Google app and your other favorite apps, and be on the lookout for handy Now cards to help you with tasks big and small.

Posted by Aparna Chennapragada, Director of Product Management

Posted:
Often the hardest part of traveling is navigating the local language. If you've ever asked for "pain" in Paris and gotten funny looks, confused "embarazada" with "embarrassed" in Mexico, or stumbled over pronunciation pretty much anywhere, you know the feeling. Now Google Translate can be your guide in new ways. We’ve updated the Translate app on Android and iOS to transform your mobile device into an even more powerful translation tool.

Instant translation with Word Lens
The Translate app already lets you use camera mode to snap a photo of text and get a translation for it in 36 languages. Now, we’re taking it to the next level and letting you instantly translate text using your camera—so it’s way easier to navigate street signs in the Italian countryside or decide what to order off a Barcelona menu. While using the Translate app, just point your camera at a sign or text and you’ll see the translated text overlaid on your screen—even if you don't have an Internet or data connection.

This instant translation currently works for translation from English to and from French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish, and we’re working to expand to more languages.
Have an easier conversation using the Translate app
When talking with someone in an unfamiliar language, conversations can... get... realllllllly... sloowwww. While we’ve had real-time conversation mode on Android since 2013, our new update makes the conversation flow faster and more naturally.

Starting today, simply tap the mic to start speaking in a selected language, then tap the mic again, and the Google Translate app will automatically recognize which of the two languages are being spoken, letting you have a more fluid conversation. For the rest of the conversation, you won’t need to tap the mic again—it'll be ready as you need it. Asking for directions to the Rive Gauche, ordering bacalhau in Lisbon, or chatting with your grandmother in her native Spanish just got a lot faster.