Google is working with celebs on Snapchat-like vertical videos in search results

Image: Brittany Herbert/Mashable

Google is taking another step toward making search more fun. 

The company is testing a new feature that allows celebrities and influencers to record vertical video clips answering common search questions about themselves.

The new videos will appear when you search for relevant questions about celebrities. The new feature is rolling out now in the U.S, and for the time-being, it’s a mobile-only. But Google product manager Rami Banna says the goal is to eventually expand to desktop searches as well as more countries.

To enable the feature, Google created a dedicated app that pulls in relevant questions about each celebrity, based on current search trends. Will Ferrell, for example, may see a question about his real-life drumming abilities.

Image: google

“What we do is expose what we think are the most appropriate questions for them based on our users and what they’re asking,” says Banna. “What’s most asked and also what’s trending and what the system has determined is most related to them, whether it’s about their work or their expertise, or things that they really enjoy talking about.”

The celebrities can choose which questions they want to record answers for using the in-app camera. Once they’ve recorded answers, the videos will appear at the top of relevant search results, though Banna notes the videos are subject to the same content policies as anything else in search.

For now, Google is working with a small group of about a dozen celebrities and influencers on the feature. But Banna says the plan is for the group, which includes Will Ferrell, Kenan Thompson, Allison Williams, and Nick Jonas, to expand to encompass more than just traditional celebrities.

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