This Week in Search: New Features from Google, Facebook and Twitter

Pure SEO’s This Week In Search series takes a look at the top SEO and SEM news stories from the week.

This week Google was busy announcing a bunch of new stuff, Facebook rolled out a new feature, and Twitter expanded its limits.


Twitter Officially Expands its Character Count to 280

In September we announced that Twitter was planning on expanding its character count from 140 to 280. Now, it’s officially available to the public. There has been some controversy around the change, but Twitter has made the final call. What do you think about it? You can also check what’s trending on Twitter in real-time now.


Google Assistant Lets Users Subscribe to Daily Reminders

Google Assistant on iOS and Android devices have a new feature that lets users  subscribe to daily reminders. You can command it to send you a weather update, a funny video, a self-help tip – anything really, every day.

Speak your command into your phone and Google Assistant will ask you to choose a time of day to receive the reminder. You can subscribe to the same thing multiple times a day, set up a number of other subscriptions, and edit or cancel any time.


Google to Estimate Wait Times for Local Restaurants

It’s annoying when you’ve finally decided on a place to eat, you get there, and the waiting line goes out the door. Google knows how you feel, so soon it’ll be estimating wait times and displaying them in Search and Maps in real-time.

This feature will be available for nearly a million sit-down restaurants around the world. Simply search for the name of your favourite restaurant to find the estimated waiting time. Bon appetite!


Facebook Rolls Out A New Polling Feature

Those with Facebook profiles or pages can now post simple polls, with the option to add a GIF. Polls include one question and two choices of answers, and can run for as long or as short as you like.

To make a poll, start creating a status and scroll to the bottom to find the poll option. Enter your question and choice of answers, and decorate it with a GIF if you want.


Google’s New Search Engine is for Finding 3D Objects to Use in Apps

Google has created a new search engine called Poly, designed specifically for the purpose of finding 3D objects. If you’re developing an app for AR and VR, 3D objects are a must. Now, it’s easy to discover thousands of free models – and all of them completely free! The objects can be modified by the end-user, or used simply as is.

Poly is integrated with Google’s Tilt Brush and Blocks tools, and allows for direct uploads of OBJ files. ‘Liking’ an object will allow you to import it into one of these tools, where you can then ‘remix’ it, aka edit it. The objects can also be downloaded as an animated GIF, but it’s only capable of spinning in a circle.


Google is Changing How Travel Websites Access Airfare Data

Farewell QPX Express! As of April 2018, Google is shutting down its QPX Express API service, which is a feed that automates airfare data for third party search engines, such as travel sites. However the original QPX enterprises will continue to run. QPX enterprises is the original platform and is more advanced.

Google said: ”Our travel partners continue to have access to data provided by QPX for enterprise as they have over the last 7 years, and will have in the future. We’re committed to collaborating with our partners to make the entire online travel journey better for travelers around the globe.”


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Rachel Matela

Rachel is a Filipino Kiwi with a passion for the arts. Having graduated with an Arts Degree in English from UoA, she found writing work at PureSEO as a Junior Copywriter and quickly moved on to the role of Editor. In her spare time, she reads Austen and teaches dance classes in the weekend.

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