Google launches new holding company Alphabet
In what was undeniably the biggest new story in the tech world this week, Google surprised us all by announcing a major restructuring which will see the search giant become a subsidiary of new holding company Alphabet. Some of Google’s wilder efforts, such as their health companies, Nest, and Fiber, have been spun off to run separately from Google itself as part of the change. Sundar Pichai will now become the CEO of Google, while co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin will become CEO and President of Alphabet, respectively. Page said this will allow him and Brin to get “more ambitious things done” and “take the long term view.”
Bing launches Seattle Seahawks reward scheme
Bing has long sponsored the Seattle Seahawks, but has taken its partnership one step further by announcing a deal to offer rewards to Seahawks fans who use Bing. This is similar to the existing Bing Rewards program, but is the first time it’s ever been linked directly to a third-party organisation. Seahawks fans who sign up at bing.com/seahawks will earn credits every time they search on Bing, along with rewards including discounts on concession stands and the Seahawks store, season tickets, signed gear and VIP parking passes.
Google drops ‘Local Pack’ results to 3 from 7
Google has updated the ‘Local Pack’ in its search results, to display just three local businesses above the main search results, rather than the previous seven. The three included now include more detailed information, including opening hours. “We are constantly exploring the best way to bring a better search experience to our users,” a Google spokesperson told Search Engine Land. “This update provides people with more relevant information, including photos, reviews and prices, for searches that have multiple results for a given location.” The change will be great news for businesses already ranking in the top three for local searches, but frustrating for those in positions four through seven.