Google Rolls Out iOS Keyboard With Built-In Search

'Gboard' Also Allows Users to Swipe Text, Send GIFs

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Google introduced a new keyboard for iPhone users that will allow them to perform search queries straight from their keyboard.

Dubbed Gboard, the iOS app already joins a crowded field with others such as Microsoft's Word Flow and SwiftKey. But what makes Google's solution so unique is the ability to seamlessly perform searches within the keyboard itself.

Users who want to send a dancing emoji can simply search "dancer." If someone wants to send a "Game of Thrones" GIF, they can do that, too. But perhaps the most impressive feature is that it allows users to search for addresses, information or images as easily as they do on the open mobile web, something especially important to Google.

Credit: Google

Mobile search advertising brought in nearly $9 billion in 2015, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau's 2015 digital advertising report.

Search results will appear as a card with the key information -- like phone number, ratings and hours -- front and center. With a single tap, the user can send that information to whom they're chatting with.

The move makes sense for the tech titan, which said last year that users are searching more on mobile than desktop. The company also pays a king's ransom to be the default search engine for the iPhone's Safari browser. While those numbers have not been revealed publicly, court transcripts show Google paid Apple $1 billion in 2014 for such privilege.

Google firmly believes that consumers purchase items via mobile in short, burst-like instances that it calls "micro moments." While you can't view or purchase anything with the keyboard yet, it wouldn't be surprising to see such a feature added in the future.

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