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Search getting specialized

By Jason Meserve on Wed, 09/27/06 - 12:31pm.

Typically, when I need to find something on the Internet I, like millions, head straight to Google. But the search giant isn't the end all, be all for search. Two new search companies here at DEMOFall 2006 stood out with something that won't dethrone Google, but could provide a useful alternative for those searching for very specific things.

Retrevo is a search engine for consumer electronics. If you're looking to buy something, need to research a problem with an existing device or are trying to find a lost manual, Retrevo may be for you. It returns product data sheets, sales data and even FAQ information in a single results interface. Founder Vipin Jain offered to buy a Blackberry Pearl for anyone that could find the same information through Google by the end of the show today.

Imaginestics is cool for those that deal in parts and 3D objects. It's 3D-Seek search engine let's users draw what they're looking for on a doodle pad and get results that look similar. Results are returned as standard listing or as a cluster map of all results that can be quickly scanned for a matching part. The example the company gave is if you try searching for a "bracket" on Google, you're first results will be "NCAA Brackets".

Neither will unseat King Google, but both could carve out a nice niche of users.