Google Search results (answer card not showing) glitch under investigation, says product expert

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Google has been quite busy with revamping the Search results page over the recent past, but it appears some of the changes are not going well with users of the platform.

Not long ago, the company started testing dark theme on Windows and Mac. The feature has been available for users of Google Search on mobile for a while now and is just making its way to computers.

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Google Search dark mode on desktop (Click/tap to view)

Unlike previously where the testing was limited to a few users, this time the rollout seems to be targeting more, including users of Google Search on other browsers like Microsoft Edge.

In another report by 9to5Google, Google Search is also set to bag ‘About this result’ panel that details information about the website you are about to visit.

If it’s a site you haven’t heard of before, that additional information can give you context or peace of mind, especially if you’re looking for something important, like health or financial information.
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The publication also recently reported that Google Search is getting support for passage ranking in a bid to help users easily find answers that are buried away by understanding individual passages.

Google-Search-About-this-result-beta

Compared to dark mode support, passage ranking is available on a limited scale in the U.S., but a global rollout is expected at some point in time. When exactly? No one knows.

But what we do know for sure is that some Google Search users are not impressed by one recent change in the app that seems to be a direct result of ongoing feature testing.

Google-Search-results-answer-card-issue

(Source)

Hi, For the last few days, google search results have been malfunctioning. For eg. when I search 3+4= , I get search results for 3+4, instead of the calculator coming up. When I search ‘what time is it now’ – I do not get the current time, but instead I only get search results.

This happens across all browsers (chrome, edge, firefox, android chrome etc), but only after I log into my google account. When I log out, I everything works fine. Even my google home and mini devices aren’t working properly. For eg. when I ask them ‘what time is it now?’ they reply ‘I dont underststand’ ; but when I ask them to ‘repeat what you heard’, they correctly say ‘I heard – what time is it now’?
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When using Chrome and signed into my google account when I search for “weather” I get no google card showing me the current weather, instead just search results and in the lower right a survey from google saying “How satisfied were you with the results?” I click not satisfied at all and it still doesn’t give me the weather card.
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Typically, a Google Search for quite straightforward queries like weather, time, common currency conversion and even definition of words usually returns the best answer in a neat card, as seen below.

Google-Search-results-2 Google-Search-results-1

But some reports doing rounds in the forums suggest this isn’t the case. Below is another screenshot shared by an affected user comparing present (left) and past (right) Google search results page for the same query.

Google-Search-results

Click/tap to view

The issue affects users who have signed into their accounts. As a workaround, although not convenient, you may have to sign out of your account on the web browser to keep getting Search answer cards.

While it isn’t immediately clear whether this is a new feature being tested or probably even another bug in the app, the surging reports have undoubtedly thrown Google into quick action.

According to a product expert in the web search forums, Google has been made aware of this issue in order to commence investigations. For now, no official statement has been put forward just yet.

In view of the number of similar reports, I’ve referred this behaviour to the Google Search team for investigation. It does seem to be odd that an account related experiment would remove so many useful features.

Google-product-expert-answer-card

(Source)

As always, we will keep an eye on the matter and update this article once Google makes an official communication.

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