Whenever a user makes a search query on Google, they are offered filters. Often, the order of the filters is determined by the search itself but typically a user can choose between photos, news, videos, maps, books, flights, and shopping. Last week, Google tested an additional filter titled, “Personal,” aimed at tailoring search results to the user.
Because Google collects information on users, this filter is able to give the user results based on what they know about you. Google is constantly collecting information about their users and storing it, not only for their own research purposes but to contribute to their overall goal of improving user experience. For anyone signed into their Google account while making a search, this filter was available last Friday. When selected, the results page would include your personal emails, flight information, photos, and more related to your search query.
At this time, the Personal filter has been removed but in the time that it was accessible, Google presumably collected data on how users interacted with the filter, deciding how helpful it is to the user. This option would likely be useful to someone who travels a lot, especially for work. When making a query about a particular place, for example, you can see your flight information, anything you have in your email about events or itineraries, and more general information about whatever it is you were originally inquiring about. This is one of the many ideas and changes Google is working on to improve user experience, as they are constantly testing out similar features.