Universal Search - Applications | webOS Nation

Universal Search - Applications 20

by Adam Marks Wed, 07 Jul 2010 2:52 pm EDT

Universal search is an extremely powerful tool within webOS that allows you to access all kinds of data on your phone within a matter of seconds and from anywhere on your device. To access Universal Search, all you need to do is start typing on the keyboard while in the Launcher or while in Card View (to access card view while in an App, simply swipe up from the gesture area to minimize that app). In addition to Contact Search, webOS will also search for all of your installed applications on the phone, no matter where the icon is throughout the launcher. Continue reading after the break to learn the specifics of how to search for applications using Universal Search


Let’s assume that you want to open a new Web Browser, but don’t want to look through your launcher to find you Web app. Simple start typing "web" via Universal Search and you can see that it displays the "Web" application, in additional to any contacts with the letters "web" in their name. At this point, all you need to do is click on the "Web" app to launch a browser card.

Universal Search - Web

In addition, many apps have alternate search terms that can be used to find an app in Universal Search. Look at this example that searched for "pre". As expected, the apps for "PreCentral" and "Preware" were found, but so were all of the Settings Apps on the Pre. A few other alternate search terms that you can use are "SMS" for Messaging, or "Twitter" for TweetMe.  What other alternate search terms have you found?

  Universal Search - Pre

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todo produces Tasks
date produces Calendar
note produces Memos

Keep playing; there's a bunch like this. Of course, usually it'll be faster typing the actual name of the App

btw- first

"brightness" brings up screen & lock
"pictures" for photos
"movies" for YouTube
"alarm" for clock
"settings" same as "Pre"

Mostly just start typing what you are looking for even if you don't know which app it is located in and you will probably be able to find it.

universal search is amazing feature I love showing off.

what I want to know is where to get that sweet dharma palm wallpaper?!?

that was a creation all my own... I will post it on the forums later tonight and provide a link...

Universal Search = Awesome.
No Keyword Configuration = Fail

I've been asking for a patch to modify/add/delete keywords within apps/contacts but was told that's not possible or was just ignored.

Although we do not have a gazillion apps, it can be a pain trying to figure out these weird spellings / names that some apps use.... (through univ. Search)

If you know how, and are so inclined, you can edit the appinfo.json file of each app you want and add your own keywords.

I think it's cool that you can still type in "Blazer" for the internet.

Ha! That's awesome. You can also type 'internet' and 'browser' to launch Web.

'tunes' finds the Music app.

Bad Kitty also pops up for 'twitter.'

Just Pong and Wobble Words launch for keyword 'game.'

Other apps I've found with little tags are 'nap' for PowerNap and 'digg' for Digloo.

The browser I've heard on the Centro was named Blazer and if you type that into US it will display the web broswer.

I wish the most used could get some precedence, as I hate that "Send My Location for WebOS" is listed before the "Web" browser. It doesn't make sense, and it strips me of the possibility to use enter to select the first item in the search result.

"Games" works for both Poker Drops and Wobble Words. I think it would be great if all apps used a category keyword for universal search

The fact that "games" works for 3rd party apps means that developers can build these keywords into their apps.

They should do it as a WebOS best practice to make their apps more cohesive with the users experience.

The best comment on this article today.

Lazy developers should be added keywords to their apps.

Maybe someone should post a sticky for them....

Type any two letters. Universal Search will display all contacts whose names contain those two letters either together or as the initial letters across the first and last name.

For example, if I type ji this is what I see on my phone:

John Illy
Jim Fisher
Ji Young Lee
Eric Jimenez

In place of the italics you will see underlines (wasn't sure how to show underlines in this post).

You can also find a contact by:

Company (first word)
Telephone # (full)
Nick name

Plus U\S also works in...

Email (sender & subject)
Messaging (name)
Notes (all)
Tasks (task name)
Doc view (doc title)
PDF (doc title)
Web (url history)
Music (all categories)
Photos (album name)

By the way, I don't know if you guys realized this but the reason all those Settings applications come up when you type "Pre" is not because of the Pre, but because all those settings apps can also be found by typing in "Preferences"

D'oh....that actually didn't occur to me! thnx!

Yes, i know, but why nothing can search on calendar ?!!!!!

Wireless brings up Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.