Google’s Knowledge Graph, the company’s approach to augmenting search results for its users by providing contextual information and media, has gotten a music-focused update which allows users to more easily see song and album information on searches for artists. The update was first pointed to by search engine blog Search Engine Roundtable.
By adding keywords to the end of a search containing an artist’s name -- words like albums, songs and discography -- returns a list of precisely that, as you can see below.
Clicking the album art will redirect your search to that album, with featured videos and the now-standard Knowledge Graph display along the right side of the search results.
Google’s new programming isn’t foolproof -- a search for ‘Beach House songs’ works, while ‘Beach House’ albums does not, and don’t even bother trying to ease your quest for information on !!! -- but is nonetheless impressive in its breadth, with everything from Throbbing Gristle’s discography to the (mostly) lost-to-time singles of Strawberry Switchblade represented.
The additions are likely designed to bolster YouTube’s imminent music subscription service, news of which Billboard.biz broke yesterday evening and which is expected to launch this year as well as its Google Play service. The power of using Google, well-established now as the place where the world asks computers questions, to drive new users to YouTube and its music service can’t easily be overstated; if even a relatively small minority of Google’s users can be acclimated to the task of searching in a specific way to quickly access the content they’re looking for, then being pointed towards YouTube’s music service, it will be a powerful driver for the nascent service.
A recent corollary to the service could be Apple’s inclusion of its recently launched iTunes Radio product into iOS7’s Music application, which by default opens onto the Radio tab in that program. Apple CEO Tim Cook said that 65% of users had upgraded to the new mobile operating system, drawing in 20 million users in its first month.