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The other day my Google search app search results started looking like this:

Google search results

There appears to be a globe next to all results and it's just much less readable. The app is up to date.

When I change my account in tyre Google app to my secondary email account, the issue goes away.

Any idea how to correct this?

  • Did you update the app? – Matthew Read May 7 '17 at 23:05
  • @Matthew Read I assume it's set to auto update – im1dermike May 7 '17 at 23:33
  • This happens when you search with Google Search App? Seems strange, maybe its newer version mine doesn't do this. Let me try to reproduce the issue with mine. Will get back to you – xavier_fakerat May 10 '17 at 11:20
  • imho uninstall the google search app. clear your google account setting and then reinstall the app. Also what happens if search from any other device while logged into the same google account? – Iftekhar May 17 '17 at 10:30
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+50

While I couldn't entirely reproduce this issue, I found a few points worth to share:

Seems the issue is caused by autocomplete feature in Google App.

Searching using autocomplete

When you start a search on Google, you can find the information you're looking for faster using search predictions. Search predictions are possible search terms you can use that are related to the terms you're typing and what other people are searching for.

How autocomplete works

Predictions are made based on factors, like the popularity and freshness of search terms. When you choose a prediction, you do a search using the term you selected.

Where search predictions come from

  • The terms you're typing.

  • Relevant searches you've done in the past (if you're signed in to your Google Account and have Web & App Activity turned on).

  • What other people are searching for, including Trending stories . Trending stories are popular topics in your area that change throughout the day. Trending stories aren't related to your search history.

Here's what Google says about autocomplete feature:

Search predictions aren't the answer to your search. They're also not statements by other people or Google about your search terms.

Change autocomplete settings

If you're using the Google app on an Android device, you can turn off Trending stories .

  1. Open the Google app .
  2. At the top left, tap Menu Settings Autocomplete .
  3. Tap the switch to turn "Show trending stories" off or on.

What can't be changed

Other than Trending stories, you can't turn off search predictions. Search predictions are built into Google Search to help you find information faster and easier. You can always choose not to use search predictions.

As I suggested in comments it maybe a feature associated with newer Google Chrome version, together with new features in Google App.

  • I suggest, who also check related settings in Google Chrome and look for any options suggesting autocomplete behaviour.

  • In addition look for any odd history and cache, delete the unnecessary entries, in these Apps as well as when logged in to your Google account

Hope this helps

Search using autocomplete

Edit

BY default Google stores most of the users's activity in the My account section of Google account. Here Google collects bits of information based on the user's activity (e.g played youtube videos, location history, browsing and search history)

The information is stored (even without consent) in order to improve user experience - at least that's Google best explanation of this annoying behaviour.

To find out any previous data collected, or at least gain some control over your account, you need to navigate to the "My activity section of My account here you find most of the stored data, cache etc,and deleted these and also control what data is collected. ( I believe this is the cause for annoying predictions based on previously or commonly visited websites)

I managed to collect samples of the My activity section:enter image description here

For multiple accounts, Google claims the default account may get to store more of this user data activity:

enter image description here

Carefully review this "collected data" be sure to delete any details you no longer need, I suggest remove everything no longer needed, clear the cache and start afresh. Do it for all Google accounts stored in device

Check if you still see this.

References

| improve this answer | |
  • FWIW when I change my account to my secondary email, the issue goes away. – im1dermike May 15 '17 at 20:53
  • More or less what I was suggesting , you will find that Google stores most of the activities(e.g browsing, search, location etc) you do. Most of the settings can be customised under My account section so you will need to log in to review these Also, If you use more than one account at the same time, some data may get saved in your default account – xavier_fakerat May 15 '17 at 21:32
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The "globe" icon appears next to related sites, when you have the prediction service turned on.
It looks like an addition as of Google app version 7.0.
You can turn it off by navigating to Menu -> Settings -> Search/In Apps and uncheck Google Chrome.

Ref: Google Support

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  • Thanks for the response! Unfortunately, this didn't work. In the Google Search App, I went to Menu > Settings > In Apps and unchecked Google Chrome. I then restarted and I'm still seeing the globe and less-readable results. – im1dermike May 10 '17 at 13:04
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This looks to me like some of Google's internal AB testing, and you just happened to be one of the random select users with this test. This explains why your other Google account does not have the changes in search appearance. Nothing is wrong with your device, nor a configuration on your account settings. This is purely Google doing some things on their end without your say.

There's no way to disable or change back to the old style, but if you're so inclined, signing out would probably do the trick. The test will automatically be reverted in a few days to a few weeks depending on what Google wants to do with their product.

Source: Android Police

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