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Google Brings Local Search, Maps to UK

Innovative service combines comprehensive business listings from Yell.com with local information from the Web; Provides mapping capabilities, search via SMS

LONDON – April 19, 2005 – Google Inc. today announced two new search services for users in the United Kingdom, with the introduction of Google Local U.K. and Google Maps U.K.

Google Local UK – maps.google.co.uk/maps – offers comprehensive local information including business listings and related Web pages. Its advanced technology combines local business data from Yell.com, part of Yell’s international directories business, with local information from Google’s index of more than 8 billion Web documents. This innovative approach enables Google Local to provide local information that matches a user’s search, without having to rely on pre-determined categories. Google Local UK also enables Google AdWords advertisers to reach customers searching for businesses, products and services in their area using locally targeted advertisements.

“Google Local UK combines business listings and relevant information from across the web to deliver a powerful and easy-to-use source of local information,” said Nikesh Aurora, vice-president, European Operations, Google. “Google Local UK also enables Google AdWords advertisers to reach customers searching for businesses, products and services in their area.”

For example, users in Fulham, London, searching for a fish and chip shop in their neighbourhood simply enter the keyword [fish and chips], plus their postcode [SW6] or [Fulham] into the search fields to receive a comprehensive list of nearby fish and chip shops. Each result is accompanied by a phone number, street address and links to related websites such as those of other fish and chip shops, reviews and other useful information. As well as searching using postcode or area, users can also search by street name, London Underground station or airport.

Also released today is Google Maps U.K., found at maps.google.co.uk/maps. This dynamic mapping feature provides U.K. users with an easier way to find location information, navigate through maps and get turn-by-turn directions. Google Maps offers easy navigation for users, who can simply drag the map to view the adjacent parts of a map without re-loading the page. The service is also integrated into Google Local UK, so that users looking for local information can immediately see the location of their search results on a map and find directions on how to get there from any given point.

There are a number of ways in which a user can access Google Local UK. Users can go to maps.google.co.uk/maps directly, or can get local search results automatically integrated with their search results on Google.co.uk. When a user’s search includes specific geographical keywords or locations, local results are presented at the top of search results pages and are marked by a small compass icon linking users to a Google Local UK search results page.

Users can also access Google Local UK when they are away from their computers by using Google’s text messaging service, Google SMS. With Google SMS, users have another choice to access information, such as Google Local results, driving directions, definitions, Google web result snippets and more. This new service enables users to send a search query as a text message to the shortcode 64664 (6GOOG) and receive Google results. The services works on all major UK mobile operators including 3, O2, Orange, T-Mobile, Virgin and Vodafone. Learn more about this and all of Google’s mobile products at mobile.google.co.uk.

Google is focused on organising the world’s information and making it universally accessible and useful, and these new services and features for the U.K. are another step forward in helping users find the local information they need.

About Google Inc.

Google’s innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major global markets. Google’s targeted advertising program provides businesses of all sizes with measurable results, while enhancing the overall web experience for users. Google is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. For more information, visit www.google.co.uk.

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