Almost half-a-year after Facebook introduced its Graph Search as a more natural, real-time search function for the world’s largest social network, the giant is set to release the fully-functioning tool to its English-speaking users in the United States this month.
In a bold move to challenge the existing traditional search engines such as Google and Bing, Facebook has reiterated its belief that Graph Search is a more natural, accurate way to answer questions users have on a daily basis.
Since its introduction in Beta form, millions of users have provided feedback on Graph Search, which is said to be the ‘third pillar’ of Facebook’s ecosystem and is set to keep them at the forefront of the social media game for many years to come.
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, confirmed Graph Search was a long term project and that it would take time to truly refine the service.
“Indexing all this content and making it so you can retrieve instantaneously is a really hard problem we’ve been working on for a while,” he said.
“It’s going to take years to map out the graph and everything that’s out there.”
Although there are no immediate plans to introduce adverts on Graph Search, early indications suggest that Facebook could eventually sell ads targeted to users’ search queries within the graph, resulting in a highly lucrative business around search ads tailored to real-time interests and leisure activities.
However, in its current model, Graph Search is somewhat limited in scope, focusing on the four main activities or connections on Face book – people, photos, places, and interests. It is hoped topics, wall posts and wall comments will eventually make their way into the graph to provide a unique and personalised search experience for everyone.
In terms of a mobile Graph Search functionality, Facebook admits it is currently struggling to bring the product to a mobile channel, but insists it is “working on getting mobile Graph Search ready”.
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