After years of secretive planning (or not that secretive, as they started showing initial demos in 1999), Google unleashed yet another amazing technology on the world. This time it was Google Instant-the search engine change which allowed you to "search at the speed of type" or, in some cases, faster. So what exactly is Google Instant, and how does it work?
Google Instant is a technology that allows people to search for relevant information while they're typing. As you complete words, Google shows you relevant results. It extends beyond this as well, giving you results for commonly searched-for phrases that are directly related to your term. For example, if you were to type in "social media," you would get your top results for the phrase itself, and additional results for phrases like "social media icons," "social media marketing," and "social media monitoring."
The results are displayed dynamically and in real time. Since you're getting the results from predicted searches, you may well find what you're looking for before you even complete your sentence.
Of course, the technology for this didn't exist before Google, and it certainly wasn't simple to create. Google implemented improved site caching, adaptivity control for page-rendering,, a new framework for a more scalable system, and incredibly smart predictive results. This is why the first demo in 1999 took such a long time to get to its current, usable form.
Google has been working on most of these technologies for years. For example, improved caching took a huge step forward with the introduction of Google Caffeine, which got updates from sites on a far more regular basis. As per their standard, Google only released Google Instant when they were confident it would benefit users. Now that they've finally been able to unleash their formidable new approach, it's clear that the search engine world will see huge technique shifts across the board.