If you’ve got an Android phone, you’ve probably stumbled into the Google app — at least by accident — before. It shows topics relevant to your interests based on what you’ve told Google before. But today, it’s even more powerful, with trending news and videos appearing in your feed, as well as balancing your interests more carefully and letting you follow topics straight from your search results.
When you Google a topic that you’re not already following — Google uses Netflix’s Stranger Things as an example — you’ll find a blue box that lets you follow it, having relevant information appear in your feed without you searching again. It’s only for certain types of search results, like artists and public figures and popular movies or TV shows, at least for now.
Also behind the scenes is a move to display a broader range of opinion and diversity of views. News stories that appear in your feed may have “multiple viewpoints”, Google says, along with related articles and fact checking. This is an obvious salvo in the ongoing internet war of fake news and viral partisan content, and Google says it’s hoping for “a more holistic understanding” of the topics that appear.
Beyond that, though, the feed takes guesses based on all the other information Google has on you — what you’ve searched for in the past, what your interests already are, where you are, and what other people around the world are searching for and looking at — to build a best-guess experience. You can adjust it by saying you like a topic or not.