Today at Google’s search event in San Francisco, Vice President of Search Product and User Experience, Marissa Mayer, announced a revamp of Google Images — the company’s image search product. The service garners more than a billion pageviews a day for Google, Mayer said.
Director of Search Products, Ben Ling, then took the stage to show off some of the changes (which we previewed here). First, he gave some stats. When Google Images launched in 2001, 250 million images were indexed. By 2005, this was up to a billion images. Now, in 2010, they’re over 10 billion images indexed, Ling said.
People are using Google image search for all kinds of things — such as looking for products. But Ling said that the fastest rising image search terms in 2010 are: Haiti, Kesha, Justin Bieber, Nicki Minaj, and Avatar.
Yes, Justin Bieber. You’re welcome, Internet.
Google Image Search has hundreds of millions of users, Ling said. Today, Google is launching the largest revamp of the product since it launched in 2001.
The main emphasis now is on showing hundreds or thousands of images on a single (continuously scrolling) page. And the thumbnails for those images are larger. Hovering over them shows the meta data for that image. Clicking on the image takes you to the page that the image resides on, but the image is overlaid very large with the page dimmed in the background. It’s all about the image now.
Google said this new image search will begin rolling out today to users (about 10% have it right now). The roll-out will continue throughout this week. This product will work in “modern browsers” — which is Google’s cute way of saying “all browsers by IE 6.”
Google also unveiled a new Google Image Search Ad product at the event today.