Google has quietly launched a nascent bookmarking and tagging product as a feature to search history.
It’s not “social” bookmarking, like del.icio.us, because bookmarks are not public and cannot be shared among users. The product also requires way too many steps to create a bookmark.
To bookmark a site, make sure your google search history is turned on. Click “search history” on the top right of the results page. Bookmark a site by clicking on the star next to a result, and fill out the metadata.
There are some nice ajax features, including auto-fill for tags. Tags are space delineated and I noticed that the “,” key doesn’t work at all in the field – reducing tagging errors common to other applications.
To see tagged sites, click on the bookmarks link on the left sidebar. Bookmarks also appear on your personalized Google homepage.
Bookmarks are not public yet. If/once they are, this may be the first serious competition to del.icio.us (note that Yahoo’s product has had less than steller growth). Perhaps the portals should just acknowledge del.icio.us’ commanding network effect and (try to) acquire them?