Yahoo Axis is on a mission to redefine the way users search for information.
Offered by a free download, Yahoo Axis takes four major Web browsers - Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari - and alters them to display search results in a more convenient and visual format.
The internet search engine company released Axis in Apple's app store late Wednesday, as the new software will work only on Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Axis can also be installed as a plug-in on most major browsers used on desktop computers and laptops. Apps for other mobile devices are in the works, according to the Associated Press.
As most search engines often do, Yahoo Axis starts off with a search box. Once a term is entered, users will see suggested search proposals drop down as you type.
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But according to PCMag, what happens next is the new really what Yahoo Axis is all about: A filmstrip-like view across the top of the screen shows large thumbnail-view search results. Tapping on one opens the page in full screen. Swiping takes you to the next result, wrote the search engine insider.
Even more convenient, for general searches like weather, users will see relevant information in a box as they type.
As of now, Yahoo Axis is being marketed as an app that serves the function of a full Web browser, with tabs features implemented as large thumbnails that appear when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
PCMag reported that the desktop browser plugin works similarly, except result previews show up across the bottom of the window.
The Yahoo Axis browser plugin boasts favorites and recent search syncing, and unlike browser-specific syncing, it works with any browser on which you install the plugin as well as with the Axis mobile apps.
Another key feature that the tech site point out is that whether you use Axis on a desktop or as an app, search sessions are synced across both devices.
We're focused on what is the next search experience, Ethan Batraski, Yahoo's head of product for the company's 50-person search innovation group, told PCMag.
Our strategy from the beginning has been the idea of answers, not links. Search right now has three steps: you put in a query, get to a search result page, and then go to the results. Then you have to go back and forth between the results and the result page, Batraski added.
As the Yahoo operative goes on to explain, Axis, which has long been in the works, is ultimately geared towards reducing the search process to two simple steps - getting users from their search to their results as quick as possible.
Batraski told the tech mag that with he wanted to Get rid of the search results page altogether. We built a system that propels you toward being successful and prevents you from thrashing back and forth between results. It turns search into a companion instead of a destination.
In summing up the motivation behind Axis, Batraski added, we're trying to bring people a new way to search, because they've been stuck with this archaic way of searching for 10 or 15 years, looking at 10 blue links.
He also mentioned that while Yahoo started as a desktop search engine, the Santa Clara based company has a vision that is now a little more focused on the mobile aspect of search. Our focus has been mobile first: Design and develop for the mobile devices, and then port over to the desktop.
Yahoo Axis is available for download on Thursday, May 24, for iOS devices from the iTunes App Store and as a desktop plugin.
Android apps will follow later this year.
Visti Axis.Yahoo.com for more information and to get the browser plugins.