Universal Search is now Just Type in webOS 2.0 | webOS Nation

Universal Search is now Just Type in webOS 2.0

by Adam Marks Mon, 28 Mar 2011 8:59 pm EDT

With the release of webOS 2.0, HP and Palm have rebranded Universal Search to Just Type, while giving it a visual makeover and adding a significant number of new features. The first indication of a change is the inclusion of a new "Just Type" is bar across the top of your wallpaper, providing the masses with an easy and discoverable way to access the search and creation features of Just Type.  Continue reading after the break to learn all about what hasn't change from Universal Search and what's new in Just Type in webOS 2.0.

What hasn't changed

But before we get into the new functionalities that Just Type brings to webOS, let's quickly review what hasn't changed. Searching for your contacts or applications is still as simple as just typing in your search terms to display all matching items. As shown in the example below, a search for "webos" will return all apps with "webOS" in the name, along with your contacts with "webos" in their name, company or nickname, sorted with any of your favorites at the top.

You are still able to open up a webpage directly from Just Type, although a new "Go to website" option now appears when you type in a website address.

You can still type in a search term and directly launch a search within Google, Google Maps, Wikipedia and Twitter, although some of the pieces have been moved around on the screen and can even be removed altogether if desired. In addition, Google now offers a "suggest" option right from Just type to provide you with some search suggestions based on what you have already typed in.

Finally, you can still dial a number or send an email just by typing them in, or save what you have typed in directly to an existing or new contact.

What's new

Instead of a static search section that only includes Google, Google Maps, Wikipedia and Twitter, a new search section called "LAUNCH & SEARCH" has been created (see example above). This is now a customizable search list that will allow you to search within any website that participates in the Open Search protocol, any apps that register themselves as "Just Type" searchable, and even the App Catalog. So, instead of launching Foursquare, waiting for a list of venues to load up, typing in your search criteria for a venue and then waiting for that list to populate, you can just type in the venue name in Just Type, hit the Foursquare search link, and it will open up to an already-searched listing.

"Quick Actions" are another new feature of Just Type that allow you to send text directly to an app to perform any number of actions, such as creating a new email, SMS or tweet, updating your Facebook status, or even creating a new calendar event. Just type in your text, press the action you want to perform, and the app will open up with your text pre-populated in the necessary sections. As an example, to update your Facebook status, just type in your status to Just Type, tap the Facebook action, the Facebook app will be launched with your status right there, and all you need to do is press "Post"

You are also now able to search for data within specific applications, right from just type. Currently, only Email and the Web Browser are available as searchable apps, but this allows you to search for any email that has already been downloaded on your phone (sadly, while sub folders are included here, they are still not automatically synced in webOS 2.0), or search through your web browser's bookmarks or history, all without loading up those respective apps.

Parting Thoughts

It is clear why Universal Search has been rebranded away from just a "search" tool, since it can clearly do a lot more than just searching your device or the web. And, as more developers enable Just Type functionality into their apps, you will be able to derive even more benefits. While it can be a bit overwhelming at first, once you learn how to manage your preferences and how to add new apps/websites, you will come to realize just how powerful Just Type can be. So, be on the lookout for more Just Type-specific tips to learn how to get the most out of this new webOS 2.0 functionality.


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