Google's "In Stock Nearby" Link Points Mobile Shoppers In The Right Direction

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News Posted: Tue, Mar 16 2010 2:50 AM
It's half awesome, half scary. There's a line where helpful because downright invasive, and Google seems to always be creeping up on it. First came Buzz, a new social network that many found too invasive due to the auto-add feature and the extremely small "disable" button at the bottom of Gmail. Now, mobile Google searches for products can actually find where you're at and look for those items at nearby stores.

The "In Stock Nearby" link now shows up on mobile product searches within Google, and it'll use your phone's GPS/data line in order to find out your location and then hit up nearby stores to see if the product you're hunting for is in stock. We love the idea, and we actually aren't bothered by the privacy aspect. You'll have to confirm to let your phone tell Google where you're at, and you can also search a different location manually should you choose.

Currently, Best Buy, Sears, Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, and West Elm are the only stores loaded in the database, but we're sure more will come onboard soon. We tested it out when shopping for a Call of Duty game, and sure enough, it was able to lead us right to a copy at a local Best Buy. We can't wait until more retailers get in here, and better still, Craigslist ads so that we can hunt down used copies. You're on those updates now, right Google?

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3vi1 replied on Tue, Mar 16 2010 6:49 AM

Having the phone tell Google where you're at shouldn't be too much of a concern... unless it also sends personally identifiable information about who you are. Is that the case?

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?


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I'd stay away from craiglist ads, otherwise it would quickly become a popular tool for strangers to get a quickie. You may as replace Call of Duty in that pic with Call of Booty.

Still though, very interesting technology. Plus, there are already tons of apps that can locate you to your friends: Breadcrumbs, GeoNumbers, Here I Am, Over Here, Ya Mapped to name a few.

As long as they make the disable button a little easier to find, I think this is a great innovation from Google.

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rapid1 replied on Tue, Mar 16 2010 10:54 AM

As the article states interesting, and in some cases scary to a point. I especially agree with you 3vi1 as long as there is no personally identity info sent. Of course as gibbersome points out laughingly on the call of booty comment depending on what and where your looking for "things" that could be a concern as well. I am not using anything for that so it would not be a big deal. I also find his generalization on craigslist specifically to be a miscall as craigslist has been in the media specifically for that type of thing. I think that is a little unfair to the site though really, as for that specific there have been prior to it getting spotlighted for it websites specifically targeted to that, which have never received any publicity at all, and there far more nefarious than craigslist. Either way this app to me looks useful which is the main concern here, and it seems to be useful for sure to me.

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Norton replied on Tue, Mar 16 2010 11:53 AM

I am not a fan of privacy and have no problem with what googles doing.

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I think Google's had this for quite a while: if you have a Gmail account and open up the basic Google search page it will do the same thing, since to register for Gmail you give it your address. Certainly it does a "X# stores nearby" thing in Product Search based on zip code, at least.

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Inspector replied on Tue, Mar 16 2010 3:45 PM

Is this out yet? i can't find the shopping tab on my iphone Google...


Edit: Found it :) it was under more xD

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nhenrion replied on Tue, Mar 16 2010 5:37 PM

"I'd stay away from craiglist ads, otherwise it would quickly become a popular tool for strangers to get a quickie. You may as replace Call of Duty in that pic with Call of Booty."

Then you can be directed to the nearest med center with a healthy stock of penicillin

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undefined4 replied on Sat, Dec 14 2013 11:03 PM

I would like to suggest another 'search engine' as an alternative to Google Product Search: It has been especially useful to help me find where to buy Christmas gifts, when I had no idea which brick-and-mortar to go to.

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